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Congestion Pricing

Tuesday’s Headlines: NY Times Scoop-a-Thon Edition

12:33 AM EDT on August 17, 2021

Cars. Cars cars cars. Photo: Cars

Hat-tip to Dana Rubinstein and Winnie Hu of the New York Times for their congestion pricing story on Monday. Usually, we’re not fans of the Gray Lady’s usual approach to news — wait, wait some more, wait until everyone publishes many incremental stories, then jump in at the end with a story as polished as a piece of finely burled oak — but in this case, “Hustein” offered a piece filled with lots of missing details that we’ve all been trying to get for months. For instance:

    • The long-delayed environmental study (yes, an environmental study of a tolling scheme that will reduce driving) will take 16 more months (meaning that it won't be done before future Gov. Hochul faces voters in November, 2022).
    • And speaking of Hochul, she told the Times that despite previously being a supporter of congestion pricing, she now thinks it may need to be delayed because (wait for it) of COVID (even though the pandemic is largely responsible for decimating transit as more people have shifted to cars).

The story quoted all the right people (even Andy Byford, shiv at the ready) and pretty much established that Gov. Cuomo was slow-walking congestion pricing as a sop to suburban lawmakers, who will likely reassert themselves when Hochul, herself a victim of car culture, takes over.

In other news from a really slow day:

    • Rubinstein followed the congestion pricing story with a profile of Hochul (co-written with Katie Glueck) that reminds us of her love of guns.
    • Cops caught the hit-and-run driver who fatally struck Michael Williams in February. The Daily News had respectful coverage, but the lengthy period between the crime and the arrest raises questions about why it takes the NYPD so long to make such collars even when the identity of the driver is known. The mother of Imorne Horton is certainly asking that question.
    • Like Streetsblog, amNY also covered the underwhelming MTA bus announcement. (We liked our graphic better.)
    • The latest high-speed crash over the weekend renewed calls for 24-7 speed cameras. (GothamistQNS)

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