Your weekly guide to heroic and villainous actions in tri-state transportation and development.
G train advocates—Anticipating the potential closure of the G train’s last five south Brooklyn stops in 2013-14, likely Mayoral Candidate Bill de Blasio started the 5-Stop Fan Club to campaign for continued service. Numerous elected officials have joined the fight, including New York City Council Member Tish James, who is teaming up with Tri-State on a workshop about Brooklyn’s transportation system next weekend. Grassroots G train boosters are hard at work as well. Save the G!
New Jersey pedestrians—Earlier this month, the City of Trenton passed a complete streets resolution that promises to make the city’s roads safer for all users. Meanwhile, NJ Transit announced plans to make Newark Penn less dangerous for pedestrians.
Nassau County Legislator Francis Becker (R-Lynbrook)—Legislator Becker urged Nassau County’s bus operator, Veolia Transportation, to bring its planned route cuts before the Transit Advisory Committee, which can approve or deny changes to the system. This came after significant popular outcry about the service changes.
Representative Tim Bishop (D-Long Island)—Rejecting the flawed House transportation bill, Representative Bishop introduced a version of the Senate’s recently passed MAP-21 legislation to the House. This week, Tri-State joined Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood, Senator Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ), Senator Robert Menendez (D-NJ), and Representative Albio Sires (D-Jersey City) to call on the House to pass such a bill (Representative Sires is one of a growing number of co-sponsors).
Westport, Connecticut Board of Selectmen—This month, the town’s Board of Selectmen approved a plan to let restaurant owners set up “pop-up” cafes in parking spaces downtown. To Tri-State’s knowledge, this is the first instance of this downtown revitalization strategy in Connecticut.
New York State Thruway Authority (NYSTA)—Last Friday, before the close of the public comment period, NYSTA issued a request for proposals (RFP) for the Tappan Zee Bridge replacement project. Recent Tarrytown and New Rochelle resolutions calling for transit on the Tappan Zee make the RFP seem rushed.
Connecticut’s gas tax-capping legislators—In response to rising gas prices, legislators pushed for a misguided yearlong cap on Connecticut’s wholesale gas tax this week. While Connecticut drivers spend $313 extra per year in car maintenance because of the state’s poor roads, the cap would save the average motorist less than $10 per year.
New Jersey—On August 1, the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection will start accepting requests for waivers to the state’s environmental regulations, opening the door to more sprawl, air, and water pollution. 27 labor and environmental groups, recognizing the move’s disastrous implications, are suing.