Monday’s Headlines: Justice Delayed for Dan Hanegby Edition

UPDATE: This morning, a judge was supposed to sentence a bus driver for killing Citi Bike cyclist Dan Hanegby — but it was put off until Thursday. This is the conviction that turned largely on a horrific video of the driver trying to speed past Hanegby on narrow W. 26th Street last year. The driver, Dave Lewis, is facing a maximum of 30 days in jail.

Thirty days for killing a man.

Last week, I asked Mayor de Blasio about this outrage, but he said he hadn’t seen the video and muttered something about vehicular laws getting “tighter” when we all know drivers kill without sanction every day. I told Hizzoner’s staff to show him the video of Dave Lewis killing Dan Hanegby because later in the day, I’ll soon be demanding comment after Lewis gets away with murder.

Fair warning.

Here now, the news:

  • Where’s Marty? State Senator Marty Golden was supposed to show up for interviews at The Brooklyn Paper and WBAI in the last few days, but blew them both off — giving his Nov. 6 opponent, Democrat Andrew Gounardes plenty of free air time to talk about street safety.
  • In other WBAI news, the same show gave ample time to Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer’s increasingly untenable opposition to the community board term limit referendum, which, Charlie Komanoff has a problem with. Meanwhile, Council Member Brad Lander is sponsoring a forum on the term limit proposal on Tuesday night at the Central Branch of the Brooklyn Public Library. (Bklyner)
  • Carriage horse drivers are saying “neigh” to Mayor de Blasio’s latest plan for their trade. (NYDN)
  • Here’s what happens when you drive too fast. (NYDN, NY Post)
  • There’s probably some truth to the notion that Williamsburgers don’t believe the city is ready for the L-train shutdown next year, but the NY Post story should have pointed out that the poll in question isn’t completely objective — it was conducted by Global Strategy Group, which has worked for Mayor de Blasio and hundreds of corporate clients (including the MTA).
  • Kudos to Bike Snob Eben Weiss for letting the Riverdale Press have it for its biased story about bus bulbs last week. Hopefully, he’ll H/T me later this week when the Queens Chronicle runs my letter!
  • More people are wondering why we even need Mayor de Blasio’s BQX streetcar when better buses and subway service would suffice. (amNY)
  • Bike lanes have been painted on 12th and 13th streets in Manhattan, the Villager reports. But cyclist Cecil Scheib reports it’s already an illegal-parking mess.
  • British transportation reporting legend Carlton Reid explains why drivers and pedestrians should be wearing helmets before cyclists do. (Forbes)
  • Martha Stewart becomes a bicycle activist (albeit on a $4,600 Pedego Interceptor Platinum e-bike). (Instagram)
  • Hat tip to Barry Hoggard for the cops-in-crosswalk photo of the day.
  • And, finally, RIP to one of my favorite bingo haunts. (amNY)
  • The carriage horse drivers have no legitimate position that anyone ought to consider. We do not ask chicken owners their opinions about the ban on cock fighting.

    These abusers of animals constitute a problem that must be solved. They belong in prison.

  • Larry Littlefield

    “More people are wondering why we even need Mayor de Blasio’s BQX streetcar.”
    It isn’t intended for “we.”
    It’s kind of like the proliferation of “special” schools back in the 1970s as the school system collapsed. The small number of people who actually matter have to be more or less serviced somehow.

  • Fool

    Well I would not mind if the city franchised a private corporation to build out a elevated, fully automated, Innovia system to compete with the MTA.

    I too gave up on the MTA and now just walk a little longer to work.

  • Rider

    Term limits improved the city council. They will improve community boards too. Most likely, Gale Brewer doesn’t want to have to learn to work with new people, which is understandable from her perspective, but should not be an important consideration for voters.

  • Larry Littlefield

    Nothing can replace the subway. We’re talking about losing a million jobs and 1.5 million people in this city if (when) it goes back to the way it was.

    And they can’t be allowed to talk about that as a failure or problem, unless they can show how they were directly harmed. It will be a success and victory.

  • Larry Littlefield

    Good for the state legislature too, which is why those who benefit from existing arrangements went all out to make sure there was no constitutional convention.

  • bolwerk

    Are we still waiting for these improvements to trickle down? Because we’ve had term limits for a while, but the same basic policies are still pursued by nearly every succeeding elected.

  • bolwerk

    In a vacuum, privatization schemes solve nothing. Construction costs are the same or higher, the equipment is more expensive because it is a proprietary, and vendors expect a profit. Plus the old system is going to continue running.


  • bolwerk

    The failure to address the L Train crisis is partly a PR failure caused by watchdogs’ failure to understand history. Without red tape, a system like BQX from Williamsburg over the Queensboro Bridge to Midtown could have easily been built since we discovered the L Train crisis a few years ago. The bridge was designed to handle subways and should easily be able to cope with a modern light rail system. (Indeed, this has been proposed in the past 20 years, but for proprietary airport service.)

    It doesn’t fix everything, but it should be relatively affordable and, best of all, still useful after the outage. It’s not like the BQX advocacy crowd should object either, since it could implement much of their desired route. They could fight for the rest later.

    Of course, it’s probably way too late now.

  • Fool

    In a vacuum with the government organization operating as if it was a profit seeking company, targeting efficiency, sure the profit margin is added waste on the system and places it at a disadvantage.

    Unfortunately the MTA is a broken political entity that does not seek efficiency.

  • bolwerk

    Since they’re so eager to simulate the Guilded Age, we might as well make rich people walk everywhere. Since the surface transportation system is clogged, and the subways run like molasses.

  • Larry Littlefield

    Not so. Compare local elections and reps to its state legislature elections and reps.

  • sbauman

    The [Queensboro] bridge was designed to handle subways and should easily be able to cope with a modern light rail system. (Indeed, this has been proposed in the past 20 years, but for proprietary airport service.)

    There were flaws in the bridge design. Wind loads and snow drifts were omitted, when loads were calculated. Thus, the bridge could never support its mandated 10,000 lb/linear-foot live load mandate.

    As a consequence, the bridge has undergone an architectural striptease since before its completion. Two of the 4 railroad tracks were never installed; nor were the upper level pedestrian paths. It was still necessary to place severe separation and weight restriction on both the Second Elevated El trains and the lower level outboard trolley lanes to insure the bridge’s structural integrity.

    The striptease continued into recent times. The outboard upper level south side pedestrian path was removed in the 1980’s rehab to reduce the dead weight. The fifth lower level inner traffic lane was removed to reduce live load.

    The bridge was designed to handle subways and should easily be able to cope with a modern light rail system

    Modern LRV’s and subway cars are heavier than the wooden elevated and trolley cars of the early 20th century.

  • bolwerk

    Modern subway cars really are behemoths, with per axle loads that weigh almost as much as smaller city buses. Makes no sense to me since that mostly just wastes energy.

    But per axle, anyway, modern LRVs have a similar weight to modern buses.

  • Fool

    This I never knew. Thank you for the interesting fact. Do you have any further sources?

  • bolwerk

    They’re both pretty rock bottom bad.

    The problem I think is more pertinent here is the NYC Council used to have more voices of dissent in it, even as late as the 2000s. Now the only permissible dissent is to be more reactionary than the Democrats already are. That’s even with the Council being gerrymandered in a kind of stare decisis manner (to preserve traditional neighborhood power centers?).

    Term limits are part of a long war on representative democracy. At one time NYC had proportional representation.

  • Thanks to term limits, we are soon going to lose an on-again-off-again livable streets supporter Ydanis Rodriguez, and also our great friend Antonio Reynoso. What a breakthrough!

    Voters’ choices should not be curtailed by this stupid arbitrary rule.

  • Larry Littlefield

    “Thanks to term limits, we are soon going to lose an on-again-off-again livable streets supporter Ydanis Rodriguez, and also our great friend Antonio Reynoso.”

    Let them run for state legislature. Were it not for term limits, those livable streets supporters would never have had a chance to serve on a governing body to begin with. Since only those who promise lots of placards get appointed designated replacement when someone retires.

    “Voters’ choices should not be curtailed by this stupid arbitrary rule.”

    Voter’s choices are curtailed by the fact that the special interest ensure that in the absence of an open seat, there are no actual elections. And they work it out so there are never open seats.

    We have an actual set of facts here in New York City, beyond what I might have though a priori and you might of thought at one time. Consider the facts.

  • kevd

    walking a bit longer is not a choice many people can make, unfortunately, because their walk would be 5-15 miles.

  • Fool

    Yup, 5 miles or 1.5 hours.

  • kevd

    I envy you that you can choose to commute for 3 hours every day. Few people’s schedules allow them that luxury.
    5 miles is 30 min or less by bike for most people – many more would choose that mode, especially if NYC streets were considerably safer for cyclists.

  • bolwerk

    I’m not sure about Ydanis’s electoral history, but Antonio Reynoso was designated replacement for motorsexual rights advocate Diana Reyna. He’s not horrible but he has had some dumb ideas too.

    Term limits just play to the tabloid tier populism of the throw-the-bums-out low-information cynicism. It shows too; (soft?) corruption/graft, inefficiency, and voter malaise – the very things term limits are supposed to address – have been skyrocketing for over a decade. This has only been masked, somewhat, by a generally satisfying economy for those who are supposed to be watchdogs. Though I don’t really blame term limits for that, they’ve only made keeping elections about the needs of voters harder.

  • bolwerk

    Heh, doesn’t seem so different from most heterodox transportation ideas.

    But 5 miles is a reasonable biking distance if it can be done safely. Unfortunately, in New York, it probably can’t be.

  • kevd

    90 min each way?
    sure there are people who do it (on foot, by train, in cars, on bikes) but it is pretty far outside the norm.
    5 by bike is certainly doable by a huge percentage when a city provided decent cycling infrastructure.

    I remember when my commute changed from 4.5 to 7.5 miles each way, and that It meant only riding 2 or 3 days a week till i built up the strength.