Friday’s Headlines: Lots and Lots of Outrage Edition
Looks like our old man editor picked the wrong weekend to take off for a pond hockey tournament in Vermont. Yesterday was the first day since Mayor Adams took over that we can honestly say was a busy day on the livable streets beat.
But not for the right reasons.
It started with stories about the killing of a 10-year-old girl — on a sidewalk — in Queens. Many outlets — including Streetsblog — covered the crash, but some covered it oddly. The Post and the Daily News (calling it an “accident” in at least its first draft) both focused their stories on the second-day angle of the grieving family before getting to the news: the driver allegedly only had a learner’s permit, and was driving alone, which is illegal.
Then, later in the day, we learned that Mayor Adams’s first move on open streets was to (wait for it!) eliminate one of the city’s most popular Covid-era recreational amenities. Of course, our coverage led the day, but hours after it was published, the Department of Transportation reversed City Hall’s decision.
After that, Julianne Cuba filed a story about how the DOT hopes to reconfigure a roadway on the Lower East Side in a way that even the agency admits will create more traffic in the area. A Community Board 3 committee rejected the idea, but that vote is only advisory anyway.
And even later in the day, we learned from Friend of Streetsblog Jehiah Czebotar that Council Member Justin Brannan (D-Bay Ridge) had submitted a bill to prevent parking garages from charging SUV owners more to store their more dangerous, most space-taking, more polluting and more road-damaging trucks.
Proposed legislation from @JustinBrannan would prevent parking garages from charging more $$ for heavy SUVs.
Strong no on this. SUVs are lethal in an urban setting. We need to make them expensive to bring into the city at every opportunity.
— Jehiah (@jehiah) February 11, 2022
The bill has no co-sponsors and, given that it’s basically one sentence, appears to be some attempt by the Council member (and StreetsPAC endorsement recipient) to tell some SUV-owning constituent that he “tried.” It also wouldn’t likely survive a lawsuit, given that it seeks to tell the owners of a parking garage (aka a finite space) how much they can charge people to use that space. If Brannan’s bill passes, perhaps we can get a law that says that landlords can’t charge more for a 1,000-square-foot apartment in Tribeca than they do in the South Bronx.
Whew. Here’s hoping at least that our editor is having fun pucking around while we spend the day doing follow-ups.
In other news:
- Speaking of drivers who lose control of their cars, a senior citizen struck a pedestrian as she crashed into a Trader Joe’s on Thursday. (NY Post)
- The head of the Long Island Rail Road has resigned, so the president of Metro-North will run both railroads for a while. What could possibly go wrong? (NYDN)
- Bodega owners on the Lower East Side are waking up to the disaster of 15-minute grocery delivery. (Gothamist)