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Thursday’s Headlines: A Bridge Too Far Edition

12:30 AM EDT on June 25, 2020

Advocates are calling for five new bike bridges, to carry cyclists from Queens and Brooklyn from three points in New Jersey, to Manhattan. Photo: T.Y. Lin International

For reasons we have yet to fathom, the New York Times takes great pains in virtually every local transportation story to highlight the grievances of New York City drivers. Given the many layers of editors at the Gray Lady, this concerted pro-car thrust cannot be an accident; by now, it must be acknowledged as an ideological bias as strong as is Streetsblog's in the other direction. Following is the top, literally, the lede!, of Winnie Hu's story about a proposed bike bridge to Manhattan:

"New York City has taken street space away from cars for dozens of pedestrian plazas and for hundreds of miles of bike lanes that make up the largest urban bike network in the nation.
"It has significantly expanded those efforts during the coronavirus pandemic, adding more than 40 miles of open streets for pedestrians and cyclists, some of which may become permanent.
"Now, a new proposal calls for the city to build the first new bridge to Manhattan in decades — one just for cyclists and pedestrians."

"Just for cyclists and pedestrians"? Oh, the horror!

Streetsblog covered the bridge proposal's tepid reception among COVID-weary activists.

In other news, MTA stories predominated:

    • The MTA's yawning budget gap threatens transit as we know it (AMNY, NYP).
    • Advocates worried, meanwhile, that the agency's financial collapse threatens plans to retrofit stations for accessibility (The City).
    • The Transport Workers union ripped the MTA's coronavirus response (NYP), while the top MTA overtime earner raked in almost $300K (NYP).
    • Artificial-intelligence software may track New Yorkers' mask compliances in the subway (Gothamist).
    • The City Council is moving forward legislation to legalize e-bikes and e-scooters (NYP).
    • The mayor announced 23 more miles of opens streets and temporary protected bike lanes (Streetsblog, Gothamist).
    • A year after the death of bike courier Robyn Hightman, the NYPD is blaming the crash on "bicyclist error" (Bicycling).

Readers will excuse the brevity of these headlines: Our grizzled editor is out cold on legit painkillers after his successful shoulder operation.

For demonstration purposes only. Photo: Eve Kessler
For demonstration purposes only. Photo: Eve Kessler

We'll end this file with a  tweet from Guse at the Newsuh: MTA brass has accepted the challenge to ride the bus with him! Will others take up the invite, inquiring minds want to know?

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