Monday’s Headlines: ‘Hey, Mister Softee — Slow Down!’ Edition
I scream, you scream, we all scream … at Mister Softee!
Something is seriously wrong with one of the soft-ice cream company’s drivers after two Queens cycling activists spotted the same sinister soft-serve seller trying to kill them on the Rockaway-bound lanes of the Addabbo Bridge (aka the “murderstrip”) on separate occasions.
On Saturday, it was Angela Stach posting a video of the frozen fiend driving in the bike lane (which should be protected, by the way), which prompted Laura Shepard to recall her own experience with the vanilla villain. (Yes, it’s the same truck!)
A few months ago, a DOT Qns rep told me that there ARE safe bike detours to Rockaway (aka stop whining). But even a ~25 min detour lands you here. WHYWHYWHY is this barricade not being moved to protect people on bikes, incl from insane icecream trucks driving IN the bikelane? pic.twitter.com/pi8Jq3gxrD
— Angela Stach (@radlerkoenigin) August 4, 2019
“It’s beyond disturbing that he’s terrorizing my #bikenyc friends on the Addabbo #murderstrip a year after telling me I’d be ‘another memory like the rest of them,’” she said.
There are two ways to solve this problem: 1. The bike lane on the Addabbo Bridge could easily be protected simply by moving the current barrier to encompass the pedestrian and cycle lanes. If you know the roadway, you also know the feeling of having cars whizzing by at highway speeds less than two feet from you. 2. The NYPD needs to put the heat on Mister Softee. Revenge will truly be a dish best served cold.
Now, here’s the news you might have missed over the weekend:
- Easy collar: A drunk driver smashed into a police precinct house in Harlem. (NYDN)
- The anti-street safety Riverdale Press is suddenly upset that Citi Bike’s expansion doesn’t seem to include the tony neighborhood up the hill. Perhaps if the local community board had been more receptive to road redesigns…
- Lincoln Anderson defends bike lanes in often anti-bike lane paper, The Villager.
- Car carnage kills one (NYDN) and injures two in Queens (NY Post)
- Patch’s Noah Manskar offered a first-hand primer on what it’s like to be a cyclist in New York City. Perhaps Steve Cuozzo will read it!
- East Village residents hate all the garbage trucks parked on their residential blocks (NY Post). The same thing happens at the Sanitation garage on Second Avenue and 14th Street in Brooklyn. Got any others? Our assignment desk is eager to hear from you.
- The MTA is getting tough with its union employees, with an opening contract salvo that could eliminate (don’t say it) double-time shifts! (Newsday)
- Meanwhile, the MTA is going to fix the 42nd Street Shuttle. (Second Avenue Sagas)
- And residents of Fort Greene are worried about the DOT’s loading zone program taking away parking spaces? What about one driver’s garbage? Apparently, you can put any private property on the street, as long as it has a license plate on it. (NYDN)
- The Times’s Ginia Bellafante continues to school her colleagues at the Paper of Record with her full-throated promotion of cycling. “Without a systemic rethinking of the primacy of cars in urban life and the implementation of more aggressive ways to de-incentivize driving and particularly careless driving, it is hard to imagine a new world emerging,” she writes.
- And, in case you missed it (or had bronchitis), the Times did a nice job on this story about the ramification of driverless cars, thanks to this chilling idea: Big Auto’s effort to rein in supposedly rogue pedestrians.
And finally, from the assignment desk: Cyclists and advocates will gather tonight to mourn Alex Cordero (photo left), who became the 16th cyclist to die this year when he was killed on July 23 at the corner of Clove Road and Castleton Avenue in the West Brighton section of Staten Island (the death toll is now 18).
Meet at Borough Hall at 6:30 for a bicycle procession to the crash site. At 7 p.m.m there will be a ghost bike unveiling and remembrance of the teenager who is gone too soon.
Activists are hoping to connect with Cordero’s family to offer support. Family members are asked to contact Rose Uscianowski at firstname.lastname@example.org.