July/August 1994, p.5

Local Track

Gowanus Highway Rebuild: Ten Years, $750 Million, No Problem
The State Department of Transportation continues to resist community requests for an Environmental Impact Statement to determine me effects of tens of thousands of cars flooding west Brooklyn neighborhoods during the planned ten year reconstruction of the elevated Gowanus Expressway. The State DOT is also frying to escape doing the Major Investment Alternative required by Federal law. TA has presented a plan to demolish the elevated structure and replace it with an at-grade boulevard and a light rail line.

Write and demand that the State Perform an Environmental Impact Statement: John Egan, Commissioner, NY State DOT, 5 Governor Harriman State Campus Albany, NY 12232.

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Four-Deuce Light Rail Clears Another Hurdle
It was so hard and so complicated that someone is writing a book about it. In late May, the 42nd Street light rail project was finally approved by the City Council and is now done with the political part of its voyage. Next comes ironing out the details between the four industry consortiums considering building the project, the City and the 42nd Street Development Corporation. Congratulations are due to tenacious Fred Pappard of the Development Corporation.

Dynamo Dave
David Freeman, the new head of the NY State Power Authority, has already helped save light rail on 42nd Street and said that he is interested in electrifying transportation elsewhere. At the Rally for a Car-Free Central Park he called for a cars out of "Central Park first, then Broadway." We're impressed.

Cars Are Back On The S.I. Ferry
On June 24 cars returned to the S.I. ferry. Staten Island Borough President Guy Molinari rubbed salt in car-sick wounds when he asked that for the first day cars be allowed for free (instead of paying $3.00) to encourage more motorists to use the service. Bringing the cars back also scuttled expensive plans for a large pedestrian area around the Manhattan Ferry Terminal.

Giuliani Update
Good: the Mayor (with lots of prodding from Sen. Moynihan) helped push the 42nd Street light rail project through.

Bad: six months into his term, Mayor Giuliani, the Mayor of a city in which more than half of the households do not own cars, his not been spotted in a bus, subway, or on a bike. Why not? He is also persisting in efforts to cut the City's contribution to transit (See page 10).

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