Thursday’s Headlines: Berry Bad News Edition

The timeline is now 2023.
The timeline is now 2023.

It’s another day, another delay on the city’s attempt to build out another open street as nicely as the crown jewel that is Paseo Park in Queens.

The most recent sad news comes for Berry Street, as the Department of Transportation announced on Tuesday night that its previously announced plan to create North Brooklyn’s first bike boulevard was getting delayed until spring 2023.

What’s to blame? Angry neighbors? Obstruction-loving local elected officials? The entire DOT planning unit stuck in a virtual line for Taylor Swift tickets? The answer is that new old standby: the supply chain!

“There’s a number of variables that really contributed to this, most notably is the significant challenges that we have with our contractors and the supply chain,” Kyle Gorman, who manages the DOT’s open streets program, told the Community Board 1 Transportation Committee. “It’s not news to anyone here tonight that the wider economy and our entire society has been profoundly affected by the pandemic and shift in how people are working and where people are working and jobs and different types of things that are required of the work that we need to do to actually implement these different types of designs.”

So it’s back to the waiting game for the volunteers at the Berry Street open street, who’ve put three years and counting into their efforts to keep the open street going. The reward for the latest wait is basically the same plan that the DOT promised to do in 2022 [PDF], but with an additional connection running up to the open street/proposed public plaza on Banker Street and North 15th Street. Let’s hope the supply chain is sorted out by then.

In other news:

  • Our friends at Reinvent Albany put out their latest report on the MTA’s fiscal cliff. Sunlight is the best revenue source, it said. (amNY, NY Post)
  • And this new audit didn’t look good for the MTA, either. (NY Post)
  • Speaking of budget woes, the city has ’em, too! (NY Times)
  • Is there anything worse than a senior citizen fatally struck by a reckless driver while he was raking leaves? (Gothamist‘s Guse had it first, but amNY added value, along with a mouthful of a headline)
  • Better late than never. The Daily News and the Post covered the taxi fare increase. Stephen Nessen had it the other day in Gothamist!
  • New York City is going to need more work hubs near where people live, said EDC President Andrew Kimball. (Crain’s)
  • Our old man editor does not like being scooped by Time Out New York on an open street story, but hat tip to the going out guide of record for its story on the city’s plan to create a piazza on Fifth Avenue in Manhattan three Sundays this winter for holiday revelry near The Tree (more accurately, between 49th and 57th streets). It’s a great idea whose time has definitely come.
  • A pedestrian was killed on unsafe 32nd Avenue in Jackson Heights. Time for a car-free street there, too. (QNS)
  • Manhattan is envious of Queens … on composting, at least. (Gothamist)
  • Arthur Chi’en, one of the few TV reporters who totally gets it, brought the covered plate crisis home to a television audience. (Fox5)
  • How about a minimum wage for food delivery workers? (The City)
  • Please don’t beat up traffic enforcement agents! (NYDN)
  • Amazon is rolling out electric vans, which are nice, but they basically only solve one of the roughly 296 deleterious effects of cars and trucks on cities — not that you’ll see that in Jeff Bezos’s press release.
  • The job of the day is at Transportation Alternatives.
  • And, finally, our old man editor’s new habit of committing criminal mischief has some fans at Reddit:

Our boys in blue have seemingly gotten all sorts of junk and debris stuck to their cars on their long drives in from the suburbs. Be a pal like Streetsblog editor Gersh Kuntzman here, and help them clean it off from nyc

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