Tuesday’s Headlines: Fix the BQE/Love is In The Air Edition
It’s Valentine’s Day — and nothing gets the hearts of Streetsblog’s staff jumping like a potential highway removal.
That’s not quite what North Brooklyn’s top elected officials proposed at a press conference on the future of the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway on Monday, but it’s not far off — the pols said they want to reverse the “harms” caused by the crash-prone, emissions-spewing “stain on Brooklyn,” which cuts through their neighborhoods like a gash.
“If we miss this opportunity to address the harms of the past, make no mistake: New York State is to blame,” Borough President Antonio Reynoso warned while promising to take his fight to the state Department of Transportation.
Reynoso and company’s show of force came after Streetsblog’s Julianne Cuba reported that state DOT has “no plans” to redesign the corridor outside of the city-owned, 1.5-mile triple cantilever stretch in under Brooklyn Heights.
“No one organizes better than Brooklyn, and we will not be silent in the face of this neglect,” the current Beep and former Council member said. (The Daily News, Brooklyn Eagle and Brownstoner all covered Borough President Reynoso’s call to action.)
Right on, Mr. President.
Inbox: Brooklyn BP Reynoso is turning up the heat on the state DOT over its lack of interest in redesigning the BQE, most of which it owns.
— Colin Kinniburgh (@colinreads) February 13, 2023
In other news:
- One person was killed and at least eight others injured, some critically, as the NYPD chased a raging motorist through Bay Ridge, Sunset Park and Red Hook on Monday morning. The driver, who was arrested, struck his victims at seven locations while cops gave chase. (Gothamist, NY Daily News, NY Post, video via Twitter) Here’s the full list of the injured with the times of the crashes, from the NYPD late on Monday:
- A 36-year-old male in the vicinity of Fourth Avenue and 55th Street at 10:17 a.m. The victim suffered a leg injury
- A 34-year-old male in the vicinity of Fifth Avenue and Senator Street at 10:29 a.m. The victim suffered a torso injury.
- A 30-year-old male in the vicinity of Bay Ridge Parkway and Seventh Avenue at 10:31 a.m. The victim’s leg was injured.
- A 51-year-old male in the vicinity of Bay Ridge Parkway and 12th Avenue at 10:36 a.m. The victim suffered a head wound.
- A 44-year-old male in the vicinity of Bay Ridge Parkway and Fifth Avenue at 10:48 a.m. This victim had a head wound and later died.
- A 38-year-old male in the vicinity of Bay Ridge Parkway and Seventh Avenue at 10:50 a.m. The victim suffered a leg wound.
- A 33-year-old cop and a 32-year-old male in the vicinity of Third Avenue and 72nd Street at 11:05 a.m. The officer’s leg was wounded and the other victim was injured in his head and torso.
- A 66-year-old male in the vicinity of Third Avenue and 73rd Street at 11:05 a.m. This victim had a neck and knee injury.
- Last year an NYPD van driver — who may have been watching soccer on his phone while driving — killed a panhandler on Eastern Parkway. The response from NYPD’s top transportation safety official? “Road stanchions to warn cars to stay out of the median.” DOT reportedly prefers a redesign. (NY Daily News)
- Politico’s Danielle Muoio Dunn did a deep-dive on Fifth Avenue, where Mayor Adams is attempting a redesign after his predecessor nixed a busway on the strip due to opposition from the area’s posh businesses. “This time is different,” according to the report: The plans will be funded in part by locals BIDs including the Bryant Park Corporation — whose president would “hate to say no to private cars ever on Fifth.” So much for that busway.
- AirTrain fares at Newark and Kennedy airports will rise to $8.25 per ride starting next month. (AMNY)
- The Post Editorial Board backs MTA CEO Janno Lieber’s claim that fare evasion “tears the social fabric” of the city. (NY Post)
- A pair of NYC knitters put together a textile replica of the NYC subway — that you can visit at the Marriott Marquis on Broadway. (TimeOut)
- Concerns about safety have long driven down transit usage among women (and cycling too, we should add). Many women say they still don’t feel safe on the subway — a pressing concern for MTA bigwigs as they try to attract more ridership. (NY Times)
- Speaking of attracting ridership, commuters to Manhattan are spending 32.9-percent fewer days and $4,661 less per year than they did before the pandemic hit. (Gothamist)