May/June 1997, p.14



Bronx Bronx Chapter News
T.A.'s Bronx Chapter will meet March 18 to discuss campaign plans for the summer. Also on the agenda: Bike Week and this year's NYC Century Bike Tour. See page 3 for time and location.

Jerome Ave. at Fordham Road Neckdowns
Plans for sidewalk extensions at the coiner of Fordham Road and Jerome Avenue took a small step backwards last month when the Daily News ridiculed the City for placing a fire hydrant in the middle of the street. The City moved the hydrant, but it will be put back by 1998, when the City builds the sidewalk extensions. Once built, bus riders will no longer have to wait in the middle of the street.


Brooklyn Committee News
T.A.'s Brooklyn Committee met to discuss getting more support for extended car-free hours in Prospect Park, performing speed counts, traffic calming and the Gowanus Expressway. The next meeting will be April 8th, see page 3 for details. Bike Week will be discussed.

Brooklyn Heights Cops Crack Down on Sidewalk, Wrong-Way Cyclists
84th precinct cops are focusing on food-delivery cyclists in their push to enforce cycling laws. After years of complaints about sidewalk cycling and wrong-way surprises, the cops are ticketing commercial cyclists and explaining the laws to restaurant owners. According to the Brooklyn Paper, restaurateurs agreed with the no-sidewalks restriction but felt that one-way rules would lead to cold food and less business.

65th Street Rail Yards Mega-Mall
Community and business leaders in southwest Brooklyn will fight a planned mega-mall, to be built over the 65th Street rail yards. Opponents claim that the completely car-dependent plan will cost the MTA more money in lost bus ridership than it will make by selling the right to build. Local business groups fear lost business while residential groups oppose more traffic. Opponents are urging the developer and the MTA to come up with a transit-oriented mixed-use development instead.

Dyker Heights: Community wants trucks off Bay Ridge Parkway
Speeding trucks using neighborhood streets as a shortcut sent angry residents to a recent community board meeting on the subject. Although Bay Ridge Parkway is a "parkway" and not a truck route, DOT Borough Commissioner Michael Primeggia refused requests to post "No Commercial Traffic" signs. The community has received some attention from the NYPD truck enforcement unit and is considering developing a traffic calming plan to discourage trucks.



Village-11th Street Re-reversed The Village's newest quiet street has heavier traffic again, and the "Barnes Dance" all-pedestrian phase at Mulry Square was nixed after residents on 13th street complained about increased traffic. DOT Commissioner Lynn still plans to make the sidewalk extensions at Mulry Square permanent this summer. The Neighborhood Streets Network is working to bring 13th and 11th Street residents together to develop a traffic calming plan for the whole area.

Madison Square Students Want Ped Mall
Students at the School for the Physical City are developing plans to pedestrianize 25th Street between Park and Madison. The students hope to work with employees in the old Met Life building across the street and obtain permission for a one-day experiment later this year.

Union Square Committee News
14th Street Business Improvement District head Rob Walsh announced his resignation in January to move to Charlotte, NC. Walsh was once one of the biggest foes of expanding the park into Union Square West. Hopefully his successor will broker a solution between diehard
motoring business owners and community members who want to expand Union Square park by reclaiming the excess roadway on its periphery. T.A.'s Union Square Committee will meet next on April 2.


Queens Committee News
T.A.'s Queens Committee will meet on March 18 to discuss the campaign to restore full-time bike access on the Queensboro Bridge. Other topics will include Bike Week and NYC Century Bike Tour planning.

D'Amato For LIRR East Side Access
Senator D'Amato has come out strongly in favor of plans to connect the LIRR to Grand Central via the partially-completed lower level of the 63rd Street tunnel. The Senator will fight in Congress for funding. A 63rd street connection would lead to fewer car trips and allow the LIRR to better service Queens. However, it could further overload the subways unless a new East Side transit line were constructed. Join us on March 24th to learn about transit possibilities for the East Side.

Staten Island

Fusco, Molinari Call For More Rail
Staten Island elected officials have responded to New York State plans to widen the Staten Island Expressway (SIE) by calling for expanded rail transit instead. Councilman John Fusco (R-S.I.) has proposed a light rail trolley system that would run down the center of the SIE, over the Verrazano, up Brooklyn's Third Avenue and through the Battery tunnel to Manhattan. Borough President Guy Molinari wants to re-activate the North Shore Line and send a rail line over the Bayonne Bridge. Such a train could connect New Jersey Transit's Hudson Waterfront light rail system.

Bus Lanes Cut Commute
A study by the Amalgamated Transit Union concludes that express bus lanes, larger, faster buses and half-price express bus fares could chop 30 minutes off travel from Staten Island to Manhattan. The plan would provide $29.5 million per year in benefits to the city, including money and time saved by commuters as well as reduced environmental and safety costs while making a small profit for the Transit Authority.