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Coronavirus Crisis

Tuesday’s Headlines: Everyone Wants a Car Ban (Except the Mayor) Edition

12:04 AM EDT on March 24, 2020

The mayor on Monday.

At this point in the coronavirus crisis, no reasonable person is opposing Streetsblog's long-argued position that many of our roadways need to be closed off to cars to the car-free majority has more room to spread out and exercise without bumping into each other.

Gov. Cuomo supports it. TransAlt and Bike New York support it. Curbed's Amy Plitt supports it. Vox writer Matty Yglesias is on board. Council Speaker Corey Johnson is keen on it (via Streetsblog). So are Billy Freeland and Philip Solomon in Gotham Gazette. And Mayor de Blasio's Twitter troll, "Competent Mayor Bill de Blasio," is, of course, all for it, too. The Times even printed the perfect picture. The list goes on.

In fact, banning cars from some streets has become a true YIMBY issue:

But the mayor isn't ready, he told Streetsblog yesterday (even as he admitted playgrounds are too crowded). (Mark Hallum at amNY also covered.)

Oh well, maybe today.

In other news:

    • The MTA tweeted some pretty damn important service changes for Tuesday — a weird way to get out some big news:
    • The weirdest moment in the mayor's press conference on Monday was a question from a Times reporter about why one of her colleagues got a ticket for making an illegal turn. That's a very bad look. Is Clifford Levy's Metro Section really calling for the NYPD to ignore reckless drivers? Bad drivers put people in hospitals, which need to be focused entirely on the virus right now.
    • The mayor will certainly use the NYPD to break up large crowds (when cops aren't ticketing reckless Times reporters, of course). (WSJ)
    • But, wait a second, the community gardens are closed, too? (Gothamist)
    • NOT being tested is the new being tested. Get well soon, Council Member Mark Levine! (Twitter)
    • Got cash? Don't expect to hand it to anyone on a subway or bus — the MTA has moved to take cash only in vending machines to avoid person-to-person contact. (MTA)
    • And, finally, thank goodness there's always an animal story to get us through these crises. (NY Post)

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