Today’s Headlines

  • Planning Department Looking to Reduce Parking Requirements for Commercial Development (Crain’s)
  • Albany Could Fund Congestion Tolling Tech in the Budget, Leave Details for Later (Crain’s)
  • Uber Comes Out Swinging Against Assembly Dems’ Lame For-Hire Trip Charges (News)
  • Gelinas and Weisbrod: Cuomo’s State-Mandated Value Capture Bound to Fail (Post)
  • Gateway Chief “Just Knows” Trump Will Fund the Project (Politico)
  • MTA Subway Schedules Aren’t Keeping Up With Changes Caused By Repair Work (News)
  • As of This Morning, Congestion on Flatbush Ave and Roosevelt Ave Has Been SOLVED (Post)
  • Drunk NYPD Cadet Drives Wrong Way, Crashes Into Ambulance, Keeps Driving (News)
  • Driver Crashes on I-95 in the Bronx and Dies (Post)
  • NYC Assembly Reps Hard at Work Looking Out for Transit Riders (QChron)
  • Motordom Has Brainwashed Clyde Haberman (NYT)

More headlines at Streetsblog USA

  • Larry Littlefield

    “Assemblywoman Stacey Pheffer Amato (D-Rockaway Park) has been pushing for the elimination of the toll on the Rockaway bridge in recent weeks, saying it hurts small businesses and residents and stifles tourism during the summer months.”

    They should have made this push BEFORE the MTA borrowed $millions ($billions?) to rebuild the bridges without expanding pedestrian access on the Marine Parkway Bridge?
    Can we eliminate service on the A train, and use the savings to increase service elsewhere?

    This is what our local hacks are. This is what a generation believes life is all about. Take as much out and putting as little in as you can — to your country, community, business, family. Freedom from responsibility. You understand what it is, you see it everywhere, right up to the Presidency.

  • Fool

    Ref: Uber/Lyft Congestion Pricing

    This is such a transparent, typical of New York, Democratic Machine Politics corruption.

    Ref: Gateway
    $13 billion tunnel, lol, see above.

    Ref: Curbside Delivery Ban
    Cool, more parking for civil servants.

  • reasonableexplanation

    Have you guys seen this article?

    “The Trains Are Slower Because They Slowed the Trains Down”

    Makes the case that the MTA’s problems are not really primarily from old equipment or overcrowding. And that all the new stuff being built won’t help.

  • Maggie

    Clyde Haberman at the NYT has found what I’ve been looking for! That one NYC neighborhood where drivers don’t blow through red lights and turn through crosswalks with families walking in them. I somehow see these dangerous conditions every single damn day in NYC, with no consistent enforcement.

    I just wish he had identified his supersafe NYC neighborhood idyll. Since passing laws against failure to yield, running red lights, and speeding has eliminated those completely in Haberman’s sphere, I’d love to save myself a lot of stress over unsafe driving behavior and move to the blissfully calm zone he mentioned.

  • reasonableexplanation

    I don’t know why I have such a different experience from you, but I find that something like 2/3 of the NYC neighborhoods I walk in (Mostly in Bk/Qns/Manhattan) don’t have people blowing through red lights and bullying peds in crosswalks. It’s not as good as every neighborhood, but it’s not in the minority either.

  • Joe R.

    I read it. Great article. I’ve been saying around here for years that the first thing the MTA should do is deneuter the trains and get rid of timers (other than those needed where speeds must be reduced due to track curvature). The initial reason for neutering the trains in the first place was a combination of signal spacing in some (but not most) places and a decision not to increase brake pressure to restore emergency braking deceleration rates to what they were before the MTA changed over from asbestos to composition brake shoes. While the signal spacing might have been a valid reason to neuter trains until a permanent fix was found, the MTA has had well over 2 decades to fix any problem signal spacings. This is just a case of institutional inertia and not caring about the customers.

    The key sentence in the article is this:

    The most punctual subways in the world care not only that trains are staying under an unsafe speed, but also that they’re going as close to that speed as possible at all times.

  • JarekFA

    Whenever I’m walking with my family, such as this weekend (and not getting around on bike solo), I see it everywhere I go.

    The bullying peds in crosswalks happens on every Manhattan street corner whenever you have more than minimal traffic. In fact, on my many intersections, it’d be virtually impossible for cars to make legal left turns during the light cycle, without bullying peds given how numerous the peds are. During my lunch break in FiDi, the cars literally do have to bully peds in order to make turns.

    I suppose it’s not 2/3 of all intersections as I sometimes walk across “sleepy neighborhoods” in Brooklyn or late at night. But whenever an area is mildly “busy” then I don’t see how you can possibly miss it. I was walking in Chelsea with my family this Sunday and the whole time I have to keep my 2 year old on the tightest leash and I have to pick him up when crossing the street.

  • reasonableexplanation

    I don’t miss any bullying or red light running, in fact it annoys me greatly, and whenever it does happen, if the driver can see me i give them the stare of shame or throw my hands up in exasperation.

    It just doesn’t happen that often to me.

    I’m not in Manhattan during working hours though, and you listed manhattan neighborhoods exclusively; maybe it’s a particular problem there at those times?

  • AMH

    Bingo, and it sounds like this may actually be getting the right kind of attention. Andy “I’m not going to allow schedule padding” Byford is a refreshing change from Ronnie “Why should speed even be a goal?” Hakim.

  • Vooch

    $13 billion would build 26,000 miles of protected bike lanes.

  • This happens everywhere in New York City. It is the norm.

    At nearly every light, the front car is stopped well ahead of the stopping line, and sometimes within crosswalks. This is an objective fact.

    About a year ago I issued a challenge to someone who had been denying the reality of the endemic lawlessness of New York’s drivers. I told that person that he could pick any location within the four significant boroughs and any time of day, and we would ride around together for several hours.
    Every time we saw an intersection at which the front car was stopped behind the stopping line at a red light or a stop sign, I would give him $100. And every time we saw an intersection at which the front car was partially or totally ahead of the stopping line, he’d give me $100.

    That person never took me up on that challenge. Nor would you. Nor would anyone with a lick of brains, because accepting that challenge would mean losing your shirt and giving me thousands upon thousands of dollars. This is because following the law is something that only a tiny minority of drivers do.

    What’s worse is that following the law is something that only a tiny minority of drivers think they have to do. No matter how politely you tell a driver that he or she has stopped ahead of the stopping line (no cursing, no “hey, asshole”; just “Sorry to bother you, sir/ma’am, but..”), this will offend their sense of entitlement, and they will get mad at you. (“So what?” “What’s the f-ing difference?” “Who the f cares?”)

    What I am saying is that drivers literally do not accept the premise that they are supposed to follow the law. Let that sink in. Please face the fact that the normal everyday driver is a dangerous sociopath.

    The incessant lawbreaking of drivers — which includes not only bullying pedestrians and stopping ahead of the stopping line, but also double parking, turning without signalling, opening the door without looking, and, of course, speeding — should be amongst the top priorities of the police. Given the obscene overstaffing of our police department, we have the manpower to give these matters the attention they deserve. What we don’t have is the leadership that grasps the magnitude of the problem.

    Instead, we have politicians who are far more likely to enable the wrongdoers than to protect the general interest, poiticians who would respond to the approrpiate enforcement of the existing laws with denunciation. The ideology that normalises driver misbehaviour is the same one that turned our public streets over to cars in the first place, in defiance of the fact that city streets are the domain of pedestrians.

    Currently, people drive with a sense of impunity, knowing that their chances of being caught doing something wrong are essentially nil. We need to progress to a state in which every time someone gets into a car to drive, that person feels a sense of fear of breaking the law, and an awarness that they cannot get away with anything.

    Given the degraded state of our culture, this is extremely unlikely. So we need to hope instead for the arrival as soon as possible of self-driving cars and the total outlawing of human driving. The switchover to self-driving cars entalis some risks, such as the possibility that cities might devote still more space to cars, and they might encourage sprawl. But most important is the fact that each one of those cars will drive in accordance with the laws: it will not speed; it will stop where it is supposed to stop; and it will see a bicycle and will avoid running the bicyclist over.

  • AMH

    Well said. Even when cars initially stop behind the line, they will creep forward into the crosswalk (WHY?) with the driver frequently looking down at their phone. This needs to be treated as the dangerous lawbreaking behavior that it is.

  • qrt145

    I have a theory that drivers in NYC are conditioned to “creep” by other drivers honking at them the instant the green lights up. Creeping is a way of telling the driver behind that they, too, are prepared to gun it as soon as the light changes.

  • AMH

    I think that also relates to mobile phone use at stoplights: texting driver doesn’t move upon green, so people resume crossing; someone honks, and lead driver floors it without looking up, plowing through people now crossing.