Wednesday Winners (& Losers)

A weekly roundup of good deeds, missteps, heroic feats and epic failures in the tri-state region and beyond.

New Jersey State Senator Loretta Weinberg | Photo: johnjay.jjay.cuny.edu

New Jersey State Senator Loretta Weinberg | Photo: johnjay.jjay.cuny.edu

WINNERS

New Jersey State Senator Loretta Weinberg — The Senator solidified her role as champion for New Jersey bus riders by calling for equal investment in and improved conditions at the Port Authority Bus Terminal at today’s Port Authority budget hearing. She is also holding a second commuter feedback meeting this Thursday.

Newark Mayor Ras Baraka — The mayor has joined other leaders in calling for the continuation of the state’s red light camera program.

New York State Senator Jeff Klein — The Senator wants to see part of the state’s windfall bank settlement money used to create a new program called Empire Public Works, dedicated to upgrading the state’s infrastructure, rather than seeing the funds go to a one-shot project.

Camden, NJ — The city recently approved six new major development projects, including Subaru’s new corporate headquarters, “leading to the creation, retention or relocation of some 2,000 jobs.”

Village of Mamaroneck, NY  After completing a zoning study and public engagement process partially funded by Tri-State’s Transit-Centered Development Grant Program, the Village has approved a transit-oriented development rezoning that promotes green building codes, green infrastructure, and green roofs in the TOD district.

PATH riders — Weekend service connecting Exchange Place and the World Trade Center is finally set to resume next week.

Mark Fenton — The public health, planning and transportation expert and Tufts University adjunct professor engaged New Haven residents in a walking tour and planning workshop for the Route 34 development corridor.

Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo — The mayor is banning cars in central Paris neighborhoods.

LOSERS

Long Island legislators — “After relentless pressure from constituents at churches and delis and in phone calls to their homes,” Nassau and Suffolk Counties are putting politics ahead of safety by backtracking on their solid support for speed cameras.

New York State Thruway Authority — Despite having spent the last year asserting that there would be no systemwide toll increases, the agency has quietly released its proposed budget for the fiscal year that strongly suggests otherwise.

Metropolitan Transportation Authority — The MTA has released a series of PSAs that suggest that pedestrians and cyclists are more at fault for collisions with MTA buses than the drivers, failing to acknowledge that all drivers have a heavier burden when using our streets because they operate a potential weapon.

David Samson — The former Port Authority chairman is going out of his way to make the case for reform at the bi-state agency by filing a complaint to block the state’s ethics commission from investigating his work as chairman.

3 Comments on "Wednesday Winners (& Losers)"

  1. The speed cameras in Nassau & Suffolk had “solid support”. Who’s being delusional here? Suffolk never contemplated implementing it and now Nassau is all too ready to dump it altogether(with financial penalties to the cash-starved county). Maybe the answer to this can be found in Albany. It seems their delegations were all too anxious to vote it up and shut up the advocates. They must have seen that the political calendar has local county legislative elections coming. Let the locals take credit for knocking it down. We’re out of here.

    Now tell me it’s overwhelming popular with motorists in NYC.

  2. Clark Morris | December 10, 2014 at 9:10 pm |

    When I recall my racing the 21 Orange up Main Street in East Orange on my bike in the 1950’s, its a wonder I wasn’t killed. Buses have blind spots and bicycles aren’t always that visible. Passing any vehicle on the right is risky unless that vehicle is turning left. Pedestrians who don’t pay attention because they are absorbed in their music device or phone also are a danger to themselves and others. The knee jerk blaming of the pedestrian or cyclist by police and the equally knee jerk blaming of the motorist ignores the reality that both groups of parties have to be more careful and understand the limitations of others.

    Be careful of what you wish for. Politicians ignoring their constituents to support what you want today can turn into politicians ignoring their constituents to oppose what you want tomorrow. This is said by someone who has very mixed feelings about speed cameras and little trust for either side in the debate.

  3. Have agree with Tom. The speed cameras in Nassau County have been a disaster and have done nothing to improve mobility or safety. They are a cleverly disguised tax. Traffic slows to a crawl when passing schools. Some roads have as many as five school speed zones, e.g. Merrick Ave., between Merrick and Old Country Road. They were poorly implemented and that is why residents are up in arms.

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