Tuesday’s Headlines: Big Day for Corey Edition

Council Speaker Corey Johnson will give a State of the City address (not to be confused with the State of the City address) this afternoon in Queens, but our own David Meyer spoiled some of the fun — so when Johnson mentions city control of the subway, click here for the primer. (NY1 also offered its own preview.)

Meanwhile, we asked Mayor de Blasio if his car-centric view of the world — plus the 50,000 free parking places he gave to teachers via placards — was the main reason why he canceled schools during yesterday’s rainstorm. He said no — blaming school buses and the weather prediction — but added that he longs for the day when he won’t be using a car anymore.

“I am someone who did not even own a car until 1999, and I do not intend to own a car, going forward,” he told Streetsblog’s Gersh Kuntzman (who, we have some vague sense, won’t let the future former mayor forget those words). The Daily News let Hizzoner have it, though for different reasons than Streetsblog. The Times took a news-free approach.

And now the rest of the news:

  • The Daily News has joined the outrage over the death of delivery cyclist Aurilla Lawrence, covering Monday night’s vigil and pointing out that she was the fifth cyclist killed so far this year.
  • The Post covered the death of a pedestrian under the wheels of an MTA bus in Queens, yet didn’t report how dangerous the area is for pedestrians and how locals have been calling for safety improvements. (Streetsblog)
  • The one-year anniversary of the fatal crash on Ninth Street in Park Slope was marked by mourning and a reminder that the city can move quickly to make roads safer when there’s enough pressure and outrage (amNY).
  • Lyft filed for a $100-million initial public offering (CNN), beating competitor Uber to the stock market, and Curbed says its partnerships with cities and commitment to transit and environmental stewardship will now come under further scrutiny. Higher prices might be coming, too, as the IPO means Lyft will be under pressure from stockholders to become profitable.
  • NY1 followed up on the story we mentioned yesterday about cops getting legally parked cars towed away so they could park for their flag-football game. One resident of the Inwood street called it what it was: “A real abuse of power.”
  • In case you missed it, Transportation Alternatives interim co-Director Ellen McDermott wrote an op-ed in the Daily News demanding more dedicated bus lanes.
  • Larry Littlefield

    Since she was run over from behind, and there were no witnesses, I wonder if Aurilla Lawrence was killed precisely because she was standing at a red light.

  • redbike

    From https://www.recode.net/2019/3/1/18246363/lyft-ipo-founder-control-john-zimmer-logan-green highlights are mine: Lyft’s revenue grew more than 100% in 2018, compared to a year earlier. That’s growing faster than its losses, which grew 32% in that time. Still, nearly a billion dollars in net loss is a massive sum, and the journey to profit is unclear. In its initial public offering filings, the company warned, “We have a history of losses and we expect significant increases in our costs and expenses to result in continuing losses for at least the foreseeable future.”

  • Larry Littlefield

    Amazon made losses for years too. You pays your money and takes your chances.

    In any event, you want Citibike to be at least break even so it can be spun off regardless of what happens to Uber and Lyft.

  • Joe R.

    That nearly happened to me about 30 years ago. An out of control car barreled through the intersection, pushing vehicles which were waiting at the red light out of its way. Fortunately, I heard the racket and moved my bike out of the way. The car passed the exact spot where I had been waiting at the light.

    For this reason and a bunch of others, I think it’s far more dangerous for cyclists to wait at red lights than to just go through. Among other things, when you’re at a dead stop, as opposed to moving even a few mph, it takes you a lot longer to get out of the way of danger. Up until the aforementioned incident, I more or less waited religiously at red lights. Afterwards, I just went through whenever I could. I figured it’s safer, it’s faster, plus just about no other cyclists bothered to wait the full cycle at red lights. It was burdensome to do so even then when my area had perhaps 1/3 the number of traffic signals as it does now.

  • Joe R.

    I always wonder where these companies which experience massive losses get the cash to cover them. Does the government give them bailouts? Do the employees take massive pay cuts, or even work for free? All I know is that a single proprietor, or even a small company, would rarely be in a situation where there were ongoing, massive losses. My own attitude towards that is if I’m going to lose money, or just break even, I might as well stay home doing nothing than work my butt off. Fortunately, my own home business doesn’t really have any fixed expenses. If I don’t make much money any year, it’s solely because I don’t get much work. It’s pretty much impossible for me to have any significant losses.

  • Larry Littlefield

    Venture capital, and bonds.

    Investors are paying for all the cash that gets burned, hoping to make it up when they become profitable.

    You might have heard that Amazon, though profitable, isn’t paying any corporate income taxes. That’s because including prior losses, they have yet to get out of the hole.

    The more a company loses before getting in the black, the more massive it will have to become for investors to get a decent return. Some will never make it.

    The only reason companies can go public before getting to profitability is zero percent interest rates for a decade.

  • running_bond

    NYPD Commissioner James O’Neill defended the department’s actions during a press conference Tuesday.

    “This was the flag football championship,” he said. “Special events go on throughout this city. So this is something that the commissioner’s football league has every year. There were signs put out five days in advance.”

    Several cars parked along 218th Street on Sunday reportedly had NYPD parking placards. One car had a handwritten note behind its windshield that read, “On Police Commissioner’s Flag football team,” NY1 reported.

    But O’Neill said Tuesday that the incident did not constitute “placard abuse.”

    “It was clearly marked ‘no parking’ on Sunday,” he said. “It’s a special event.”

    What the…? How is a private intramural game a “special event” on the order of the bike tour or MS walkathon? Does the commissioner understand what he sounds like in saying it was perfectly fine to clear FOUR BLOCKS of parked cars for his officers to drive in and park for their playtime?

  • Andrew

    The NYPD believes that the streets are NYPD property, to do with as they please.

    Why DOT tolerates this I don’t understand.

  • Oh, it’s the championship! Well, why didn’t you say so?Please, go right ahead!

    Unbelievable. These arrogant goons don’t even feel the need to pretend to follow the law. They are openly and emphatically lawless.

    Until a mayor is willing to appoint a police commissioner who will crack down on this sort of corruption instead of endorsing it, we will continue to have the effect of being ruled by a military junta.