Fall 2001, p.26


Rebuilding Rail

Dear Long Island Newsday Editor,

In the middle of the twentieth century, our nation moved away from loving good public transportation and became a car-based culture. As a daily commuter to New York City, I now see how poor most public transportation really is.

The events of the past two weeks have resulted in massive layoffs in the airline industry, including the furloughing of up to 30,000 workers at Boeing. Why not put these marvelously educated and incredibly skilled and talented folks to work rebuilding our national railway system and creating rail-based local systems? Amtrak would significantly benefit from such an arrangement. So would commuters who could trade in crowded, stressful drives for comfortable, swift commutes during which they could work, read, or even sleep.

Fred M. Goldfarb,
Malverne, NY

Don't Close The Booths

Dear Governor Pataki,

We urge you not to allow the transit authority to close any subway token booth. After many years of unsafe subways, crime is down and riders feel safe. Manned token booths provide safety and security (as well as service) for riders and are a small price to pay for such a great benefit. It would be a grave mistake to close even one subway token booth. Revenue should be achieved through increased ridership, not through diminished service. This will occur naturally when safety, efficiency and cleanliness are maintained.

Sincerely yours,
Ellen and Jay Bitkower,
New York, NY

Keep The Greenway Clear

Dear T.A.,

I agree totally with T.A. on the senseless and inconsistent policies in place on the Hudson River greenway. I used that route as a pleasant commute on my bike before the WTC disaster but now find it too difficult to navigate all the closures and barricades that have arisen. There is plenty of space by the Hudson River off the path that could be used to store vehicles and barricades. The city should relocate things there to preserve the greenway. With a little forethought for the quality of life for those who do not drive, a much more effective solution could have been found.

Gregory Cross,
Brooklyn, NY

Carpooling Good For NYC

Dear T.A.,

I wanted to express my support for the recent carpool traffic initiative. I commute by bike into work from Fort Greene, Brooklyn to Lower Chelsea. The reduced traffic improves everybody's commute in at least three measurable ways:

1) Drivers are less prone to honk, less frustrated, more considerate, and thereby safer drivers.

2) The traffic reduction is an immediate move towards cleaner air and a cleaner city.

3) The intersections that were not policed this morning were running smoothly and drivers were not blocking the right of way (as is usual without police/traffic guard intervention). It is a much more efficient use of officials within the city.

I enjoy my daily bike ride, and the carpool initiative is a brilliant maneuver to lessen the congestion and increase citizen morale. I am behind it 100%.

Thank you for your time,
Hilda Cohen,
Brooklyn, NY