Monday’s Headlines: New York on Pause Edition
Sunday started with Gov. Cuomo big-dogging Mayor de Blasio by demanding that the city remove cars from some streets so people could have enough space to go outside without bumping into each other (Streetsblog, NYDN), and ended with the official 8 p.m. End of Life as We Know It. (The governor also wants the mayor to reduce crowding in parks, the Post reported, but for some reason, de Blasio has not closed the public Petri dishes, er playgrounds, amNY and Gothamist reported.)
But let’s be smart: Take a walk. Take a job. Take a bike ride. But, as Sting once said, don’t stand too close. (The Times did a nice video showing Cuomo at his best, and amNY had the text version. The WSJ showed people ignoring Cuomo at their peril.)
Here’s what else happened this weekend:
- Gov. Cuomo will indeed consider bike repair shops “essential businesses” during the crisis, which is a relief, considering how many people are getting around by bike. (Streetsblog, NYDN)
- The Times did the ultimate, “It’s quiet out there — yeah, too quiet” story.
- Gridlock Sam followed our own Julianne Cuba’s scoop last week about the rise in cyclist injuries during the crisis. (No link, though, Sam? What’s up with that? After all the nice things we’ve been telling people about your book, “No One At the Wheel.”)
- The one upside of the crisis: People are driving less so pollution is way down in every city. So why would we want to go back to exhaust-choked air when this is all over? (NY Times)
- The city officially advised people to get frisky — with themselves — during the virus outbreak, which, of course, the Post covered. (No one should be alone during these difficult times and, fortunately, no one is, according to this memo.)
- And finally, remember how Leadfoot Joe Borelli called on the city to allow reckless speeding during the crisis? Well, the Staten Island Council Member is, again, wrong: bike Twitter is filled with reports of drivers using all the extra space to terrorize the streets:
yesterday i was commuting by bike and i *witnessed* someone flip their car on the wburg bridge. i was v grateful to be on an elevated bike lane away from vehicles. it was a disturbing reminder of the dangers that cars pose to peds, cyclists and the drivers themselves. #bikenyc pic.twitter.com/tSWJ1U7FDv
— Jacob Robert (@thejacobrobert) March 21, 2020
On sixth avenue, we just watched a dozen sports cars drag racing at top speed on their way north. Unbelievable.
— Laura Nahmias (@nahmias) March 22, 2020
This has to happen NOW in neighborhoods in all five boroughs @NYCMayor @NYC_DOT ! The sidewalks in Jackson Heights are crowded while car drivers speed through aggressively. It’ll get so much worse as it gets warmer outside.
— Radlerkönigin (@radlerkoenigin) March 22, 2020