It appears the Secret Service and NYPD are indeed taking measures to minimize the disruption caused by Melania and Barron staying put in NYC. TMZ writes that instead of implementing full street closures any time the young Trump moves to and from school, streets will be blocked off in a rolling pattern to accommodate the boy’s armed motorcade.
This past May the MTA recorded 50,436 subway delays, 697 of which were caused by track fires that could have been ignited by the 40 tons of trash that are removed from the system every day. To curb this ongoing issue, the agency announced in August “Operation Trash Sweep,” an initiative that upped the frequency by which the 622 miles of tracks get cleaned. At the time, the MTA said it would also employ individually-operated Mobile Vacs that workers can use to quickly suck up trash. Yesterday, the agency released a video of the Vacs being tested, which not only shows their incredible force, but gives an overview of how the Operation is shaping up.
At a board meeting over the summer, the MTA began discussions about increasing subway and bus fare to $3 by 2017 “in an effort to raise more than $300 million annually,” as 6sqft reported at the time. The Daily News has now learned that the agency will officially recommend the four-percent increase at their board meeting next week. Though they’ll be passing on another option that would’ve kept fares at $2.75, the hike will increase the bonuses that come with re-loading one’s MetroCard from 11 to 16 percent, “an extra 96 cents for every $6 purchase.”
After stalling repeatedly over design disagreements, budget woes, and funding squabbles, NJ.com reports that The Port Authority said it hopes to have a new midtown Manhattan bus terminal built in New York by 2030, shovels in the ground by 2021 and be “well underway” by 2026. Though some lawmakers expressed doubt about the ambitious schedule, Steven P. Plate, Port Authority chief of major projects, said at a Legislative Oversight Committee joint hearing about the agency’s $32 billion revised capital plan, “We will have full environmental approval, permits in place and construction well underway” according to that timeline.
After the Transport Workers Union and the MTA failed to reach a deal on Sunday night, the contracts for 44,000 subway and bus workers expired. But a tentative agreement was reached yesterday for a 28-month contract that stipulates a 2.5 wage increase over the first 26 months with a $500 bonus in the last two, higher than the two percent rate of inflation the MTA originally offered. Yesterday afternoon, TWU Local 100 president John Samuelson shook hands with outgoing MTA Chairman Tom Prendergast to close the deal, but it must still be ratified by the union and approved the MTA Board.
After the Transport Workers Union and the MTA failed to reach a deal last night, the contracts expired for 44,000 subway and bus workers who are demanding a higher pay raise than the two percent rate of inflation that the MTA is offering. In a statement, TWU Local 100 president John Samuelson said, “Our position will not change, and we will not settle this agreement unless management moves in a positive direction.” He called an emergency executive board session for today to discuss options for the rest of the week.
6sqft recently shared analysis that 3,000 ridesharing vehicles could replace the city’s fleet of 13,587 taxis. And while this was more a comment on how carpooling can decrease congestion and emissions, it also points to a changing landscape for yellow cabs. In a piece this weekend, the Times looks at how taxis have fallen out of favor with New Yorkers since apps like Uber and Lyft came onto the scene; these vehicles now number more than 60,000. In 2010, for example, yellow cabs made an average of 463,701 trips, 27 percent more than the 336,737 trips this past November, which also resulted in a drop in fares from $5.17 million to $4.98 million. And just since 2014, the cost of a cab medallion was cut in less than half of its former $1.3 million price tag.
Traffic fatalities in the city have dropped 23 percent since the start of the Vision Zero initiative in 2013, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced Wednesday. “Under Vision Zero, we have now seen traffic fatalities in our city decline for three straight years, strongly countering national trends,” he said in a news statement. The mayor asserted that 229 people died in traffic accidents last year, the fewest ever recorded.
Citi Bike is gearing up for a high-tech upgrade this winter in the form of lasers, reports Metro. The bike share’s operator, Motivate, and the designers at Blaze have teamed up to outfit 250 bikes with Laserlight, a safety light that combines a 300 lumen LED with a forward projecting laser that continuously beams an image to warn cars and pedestrians a bike is approaching.
Reserving three of 5th Avenue’s five traffic lanes for pedestrians will ease the traffic paralysis that President-elect Donald Trump‘s continued residence in his 56th Street tower has caused, former NYC Department of Transportation Commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan argues. In an op-ed for the New York Times yesterday Sadik-Khan, a principal with Bloomberg Associates and a key player in the introduction of the Times Square Pedestrian Plaza, angled 5th Avenue’s traffic problem as a bipartisan issue that requires change to get better. With the President-elect saying he plans on visiting his Manhattan home frequently even once he has moved to the White House, it is clear New York will need to adapt or risk forever needing to budget an extra three hours to get through Midtown.
A recent report from the University of Minnesota takes a look at major U.S. cities in terms of the number of jobs that are accessible to city residents via transit; Streetsblog brings us the news that you’ll find the best transit access to jobs in New York, San Francisco, Chicago, D.C., Los Angeles, Boston, Philadelphia, Seattle, San Jose and Denver. The study concludes that in those (top 10) cities, “accessibility ranks all exhibit a combination of high density land use and fast, frequent transit service.” According to the report, public transit is used for about five percent of commuting trips in the U.S., making it the second most widely used commute mode after driving. But the commute mode share accorded to transit varies quite a bit from city to city: 31 percent in the New York metropolitan area; 11 percent in Chicago; 8 percent in Seattle.
Earlier this week, Governor Cuomo unveiled his latest nine-figure infrastructure proposal, a $10 billion overhaul of JFK Airport. As 6sqft explained, the plan address three main issues: “unifying all the terminals with an interconnected layout so the airport is more easily navigable; improving road access to the airport; and expanding rail mass transit to meet projected passenger growth.” This final point included a direct rail link so that passengers traveling to and from Manhattan wouldn’t need to ride the subway to connect to the AirTrain. The Regional Plan Association decided to explore this idea further, and in a report out today they’ve detailed five different approaches for a “one-seat ride” to JFK, which includes an extension of the Second Avenue Subway and a new underground tunnel.
New York clocks in more steps on average than any other state in the country, and that number is most definitely skewed by New York City where more residents hit the pavement than the gas pedal. But in a town that’s seemingly dominated by pedestrians, car culture maintains the right of way. According to Vision Zero, NYC’s program to reduce traffic-related fatalities, being struck by a vehicle is the leading cause of injury-related death for children under 14, and the second leading cause for seniors.
Providing more public space for pedestrians has become an increasing concern for the city over the last decade, and as such, a multitude of plans have been put forward to create sanctuaries from traffic or to reconfigure streets to keep people safe. But beyond preventing traffic accidents, by planting more trees, expanding sidewalks and bike paths, and installing seating, these urban renewal projects have also been key in promoting walking, biking, health and ultimately a more desirable and habitable New York City.
Yesterday, 6sqft revealed Governor Cuomo’s plan to give JFK Airport a long overdue overhaul, an endeavor that would cost nearly $10 billion, funded just over two-thirds in part by the private sector with another $2 billion provided by the government. Given that most of New York and New Jersey’s regional transportation infrastructure (including bridges, tunnels and airports) falls within the joint jurisdiction of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, New Jersey will as a result receive similar funding for a project of their own—and that’s a problem according to The Record reporter Paul Berger. Yesterday, Berger published a confidential document obtained from the Port Authority that details how $30 billion will be spent on infrastructure over the next 10 years. While the purpose of the Port Authority is to divvy up cash across the region based on need, as Berger writes, the document simply shows how “interstate jealousies over funding” have led to a “quid pro quo capital plan” that completely bucks this objective.
“We shouldn’t settle for second best on anything,” Governor Cuomo proclaimed at the opening of the Second Avenue Subway this past weekend, and he was serious. This afternoon Cuomo announced that John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) will receive a massive overhaul that will transform the dated hub into a modern, state-of-the-art facility that can finally “meet the needs of a 21st century economy.” As laid out by the governor’s office, the revamp will address three main issues: unifying all the terminals with an interconnected layout so the airport is more easily navigable; improving road access to the airport; and expanding rail mass transit to meet projected passenger growth. In 2016 the airport served 60 million passengers, and this number is expected to increase to 75 million by 2030 and 100 million passengers by 2050.
When D.C.-based graphic designer and transit enthusiast Peter Dovak tried his hand at creating a transportation-based app, he was taken by the clean, simple appearance of the icons he’d made for the navigation bar–small circles containing shrunken versions of metro or light rail systems. He’s now designed them for 220 cities as part of his ongoing Mini Metros series, and made the colorful maps available as prints, mugs, and magnets.
If the city is looking to cut down on emissions and reduce traffic, here is some food for thought courtesy of folks over at MIT. Researchers at the Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Lab (CSAIL) have determined that 3,000 ridesharing vehicles have the potential to do the same amount of work as NYC’s fleet of roughly 14,000 taxis—that is if New Yorkers are willing to use rideshare carpooling like Lyft Line and Uber POOL.
The opening of the Second Avenue subway was MTA Chairman Tom Prendergast’s final achievement in the 25 years he has worked for the organization. The chairman announced on Monday he is retiring from public service in a joint statement with Gov. Andrew Cuomo. Prendergast expressed special pride for the Herculean effort to secure a January ribbon cutting for the century-old project. “[It] was a crowning achievement for the MTA and I’m proud to have been a part of such a historic moment,” he said.
Today history is made, as January 1, 2017 marks the official public opening of the long-awaited Second Avenue Subway. The New York City transit endeavor has been in the works for nearly a century, and finally after countless delays and an eye-popping $4 billion bill, straphangers on the far Upper East Side will have access to three brand new stations at 72nd, 86th and 96th Streets.
Just before midnight yesterday evening, Governor Cuomo, MTA CEO Thomas F. Prendergast, city and state pols, members of President Obama’s Cabinet, local community members, and many of the workers who helped build the new line’s massive underground tunnels and stations, took the line’s inaugural ride.
Despite the fact that its impending shutdown dominated negative subway headlines this year, the L train is tied for one of the three best-performing lines, along with the 1 and 7. The worst? The A and E. The rankings come from the Straphangers Campaign’s 2016 State of the Subways Report Card (h/t Gothamist), which graded the system’s 20 lines based on six indicators from MTA transit data–service regularity, breakdown rate, crowding, cleanliness, and in-car announcements.