Thursday’s Headlines: Busy News Day Edition

What a crazy day yesterday was: A City Council Member blasted his colleagues’ hopes of legalizing e-scooters right in front of them at a press conference. Then Mayor de Blasio tossed cold water on the whole legalization thing anyway. And then we were leaked a copy of a preliminary — or “outdated,” if you believe the MTA — set of painful service adjustments that might have to be made to accommodate Gov. Cuomo’s supposedly painless L-train repair. (The Post later followed our mega-scoop above).

All this, even as we were still trying to figure out if there is a method to Cuomo’s MTA madness.

But by day’s end, we took stock and prepared our curated list of news morsels to sate your information appetite:

  • AnoNYC

    The proliferation of electric bicycles in NYC is at the point where I see more of them than traditional bicycles here in the Bronx. There’s no stopping the rising tide of personal electronic mobility devices and the city is going to have to adjust to them. It’s unfortunate for those that will have to suffer the interim consequences of poor policy.

  • Joe R.

    Honestly, this is such an embarrassing episode for the city that it isn’t even funny. All the misinformation and outright lies being spread is beyond the pale. Maybe we should get a lawyer and sue any public official who continues to spread misinformation, starting with the Mayor. In fact, we should seriously consider arresting anyone who spreads lies as this is the equivalent of yelling “fire” in a crowded theater given the NYPD response to these vehicles. Here we have vehicles which are perfect for cities, which are legal in every other city, and NYC can’t seem to find common ground.

    One solution might be to modify the law at the federal level. Right now the Consumer Product Safety Act defines a low-speed electric bicycle as “A two- or three-wheeled vehicle with fully operable pedals and an electric motor of less than 750 watts (1 h.p.), whose maximum speed on a paved level surface, when powered solely by such a motor while ridden by an operator who weighs 170 pounds, is less than 20 mph.”

    Unfortunately, all this means is that states can’t prohibit the sale of electric bikes conforming to the law. The law needs to be modified so they can’t prohibit their operation on public roadways. It looks like we’re not going to get anything on the state or city level, so might as well try to get federal law to supersede state law here.

    Or if we can’t do that, I propose a new set of laws governing ALL motor vehicles:

    1) Any motor vehicle operated solely by a throttle is prohibited in NYC.
    2) Pedal-assist motor vehicles are legal to operate, provided they’re not also equipped with a throttle. However, motor assist must drop out at a speed of no more than 20 mph.

    It’ll be fun seeing all the assholes pedaling their SUVs (and not being able to exceed 20 mph except when going downhill).

  • kevd

    Sorry, but I have to ask.
    Do the subway cars of the future have USB ports?

    While we’ve given the new Cuomo buses a lot of stick for the USB ports, they do seem to be a considerable improvement on previous models in some important, non-USB port ways.

  • Fool

    ref: MTA Elevators

    The life changing experience that is riding any of the south east asian metro, getting in a metro elevator, and not holding your breadth for the ride while being 100% confident it is going to work.

    Not to mention 100% accessibility in those systems.

    But unfortunately NYC’s problems cannot be solved with more money.

  • Larry Littlefield

    And cannot be solved without more money. And more and more money is going elsewhere.
    But that’s under Omerta.

  • Joe R.

    Easy, very low-cost solution—put open grates instead of solid floors on the elevators. At least there won’t be puddles of urine sitting there festering. Periodically workers can rinse the grate off.

  • Joe R.

    Are the USB ports clogged with chewing gum yet because that’s the first thing which came to mind when I heard about them?

  • Elizabeth F

    Now, whatever is dumped through the grates will collect at the bottom of the elevator, and…. what?

  • Joe R.

    They probably already have drains there being that it’s underground, and a certain amount of water inevitably seeps in.

  • Larry Littlefield

    All things considered it’s remarkable how well behaved people are on the subway…compared with the LIRR.

  • Joe R.

    True, but the minority of slobs make life miserable for the rest of us.

    I don’t ride the LIRR, so I can’t comment one way or another on the behavior of its passengers. I used to ride NJ Transit and the passengers were generally pretty well behaved.

  • AnoNYC

    The USB ports on the buses are used pretty frequently and work, hopefully they will hold up on the subway trains.

  • Joe R.

    Well, that’s good to know. Growing up in the 1960s and 1970s, when the entire city was in a state of decay, and the country in a state of hopelessness, I guess I just expect anything nice to turn to shit, because that’s what invariably happened back then. Hard to shake that mindset.

  • AMH

    …and destroy the equipment even faster, reducing its already pitifully-short service life.

  • AMH

    “MTA Transit [sic] president Andy Byford, who started working at the MTA after the contract was approved, defended the authority’s approach because of the operating environment in the city’s subway, namely the system’s tight curves.”

    It’s NYC Transit, and I’m surprised to see him defending the status quo. It’s not like London, which has had open gangways for years, doesn’t have “challenging geography”.

  • kevd

    I’ve never even looked at the USB ports.
    I just get on the bus, ride it for 5 min and then get off.

  • AnoNYC

    Usually juveniles that go around breaking stuff and electronic devices are vital to that generation. I can’t see many teens and preteens ruining their power supply.