Thursday Winners (& Losers)

We’re sorry to deliver Winners & Losers a day late  we were busy getting our annual analysis out. Have you seen it?

New York City Councilmember Brad Lander (top) and Brooklyn District Attorney Ken Thompson  (bottom) | Photos: NYTimes (top) and WNYC (bottom)

New York City Councilmember Brad Lander (top) and Brooklyn District Attorney Ken Thompson (bottom) | Photos: Karsten Moran/NYTimes (top) and Stephen Nessen/WNYC (bottom)

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

WINNERS

New York City Councilman Mark Levine — Disappointing politics have limited 125th Street bus lanes to the east of Lenox Avenue, but Councilman Levine is fighting back by launching a petition to bring service west of Lenox.

Sea Bright, NJ bicyclists — The town council passed a resolution in support of NJDOT’s Route 36 traffic signing and striping concept plans, which includes both north- and southbound bike lanesconnecting existing bike routes in surrounding towns.

Hartford and New Haven – Job growth is on the rise in Connecticut’s urban cores – a good sign for CTfastrak and Hartford Line ridership — while Connecticut suburbs are losing jobs.

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio – Mayor de Blasio has pledged $250 million to improve four of New York City’s most dangerous outer-borough arterials.

New York City Councilmember Brad Lander and Brooklyn District Attorney Ken Thompson — Despite strong pushback from legislators opposed to NYC’s Right of Way law, Lander and Thompson are seeking harsher penalties for drivers who injure or kill pedestrians or bicyclists, and have announced a Driver Accountability Task Force.

Farmingdale, NY Village Board — The village board unanimously approved a proposal to rezone downtown for mixed-use development, giving the green-light to a Farmingdale transit-oriented development project.

Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. — Ahead of the four new Bronx Metro-North stations announced in Governor Cuomo’s Opportunity Agenda, the Borough President is calling for areas near the stations to be rezoned for transit-oriented development.

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Wednesday Winners (& Losers)

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

Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. | Photo: bronxboropres.nyc.gov

Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. | Photo: bronxboropres.nyc.gov

WINNERS

Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. — During his State of the Borough speech, Diaz called on the state to stop dragging its feet and redevelop the Sheridan Expressway.

Hicksville commuters — Governor Cuomo has announced a $120 million improvement project for the Hicksville LIRR stationthe busiest station on Long Island.

Fair Haven, NJ Mayor Benjamin Lucarelli — The bike-friendly mayor is taking his campaign for streets safety to Washington to participate in the USDOT’s Mayors’ Challenge.

Ossining Village Board of Trustees  Ossining has adopted a Complete Streets policy which will take effect immediately.

New Rochelle, NY — The City Council has approved two development projects near the town’s Metro-North station, which will include affordable housing.

Metro-North riders — By mid-April, all Metro-North conductors will carry credit card machines.

Statewide transit riders — On Thursday, state and local electeds came together at separate events in Buffalo and in Yonkers for a unified call to action: the State must prioritize funding for statewide transit systems.

New York City road users — WNYC analysis of NYC’s speed camera program has found that the program is improving safety, as both tickets and crashes have decreased in areas with cameras.

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Wednesday Winners (& Losers)

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

New York City Councilmember Mark Weprin | Photo: DecideNYC.com

New York City Councilmember Mark Weprin | Photo: DecideNYC.com

WINNERS

Connecticut Governor Dannel Malloy — Governor Malloy unveiled today a truly multi-modal long-term transportation plan which includes, among other things, an eastern extension of CTfastrak, upgrades to the Metro-North Waterbury Branch and a program to improve pedestrian and bicycle improvements in urban areas.

New York City Department of Transportation — The City DOT has begun the release of its borough-specific Vision Zero action plans, so far releasing plans for QueensManhattan and the Bronx. The plans detail specific “priority” corridors and intersections identified through research and public workshops over the last year.

New York City Councilmember Mark Weprin — After having opposed previous congestion pricing proposals, Weprin is now one of MoveNY’s biggest proponents and one of few elected officials publicly endorsing the plan.

Senators Chuck Schumer (NY) and Richard Blumenthal (CT) — The senators’ new legislation, the Highway-Rail Grade Crossing Safety Act of 2015, would dramatically increase funding for the Federal Highway Administration’s rail safety programs.

Gene Aronowitz — The Brooklyn resident is working to educate fellow senior citizens about traffic safety.

The Village of Munsey Park, NY — Village officials stand by the effectiveness of traffic enforcement cameras, and are considering the possibility of installing them as part of a four-point traffic safety plan to curb the village’s speeding epidemic.

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Wednesday Winners (& Losers)

Sponsors of Connecticut legislation SB 502, also known as  the "bike bill" (clockwise from top left) Sen. Beth Bye, Rep. Roland Lemar, Rep. Cristin McCarthy Vahey, Rep. Audré Bumgardner

Sponsors of Connecticut legislation SB 502 (clockwise from top left), Sen. Beth Bye, Rep. Roland Lemar, Rep. Cristin McCarthy Vahey, Rep. Aundré Bumgardner

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

WINNERS

New York City Council Progressive Caucus — The 17 council members submitted a powerful letter to MTA Chairman Tom Prendergast and City DOT Commissioner Polly Trottenberg calling for greater investment in full-featured bus rapid transit.

Connecticut bike bill sponsors — State Senator Beth Bye and Representatives Roland Lemar, Cristin McCarthy Vahey and Aundré Bumgardner are sponsoring bipartisan legislation which would make it possible for Connecticut municipalities to implement context-sensitive bicycle facilities such as two-way cycle tracks and contraflow lanes.

New York City pedestrians and bicyclists — One week after the death of a cyclist in Queens, Mayor de Blasio is implementing a retrofit program to add protective guards to more than 200 city-owned trucks.

New Jersey Assemblymembers Herb Conaway and Troy Singleton — The 7th District legislators have sponsored a bill that would uniformly raise pedestrian safety violation fines and dedicate the majority of the proceeds to a fund for road safety improvements and education.

LOSERS 

Gas tax opponents — A coalition of more than 50 organizations have expressed opposition to an increase in the federal gas tax because “Washington continues to spend federal dollars on projects that have nothing to do with roads like bike paths and transit.” Meanwhile, New Jersey Assemblyman Bob Andrzejczak and New York State Senator Jim Seward have taken it upon themselves to introduce legislation to prevent gas tax increases at the state level.

New York Assemblymember Michael DenDekker — Pedestrian deaths hit a record low in 2014, but Assemblymember DenDekker — whose transportation ideas in the past have included free motorcycle parking and paid registrations and license plates for bicycles —  says New York City’s Vision Zero initiative has done nothing to keep pedestrians safe.

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Wednesday Winners (& Losers)

U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx | Source: dot.gov

U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx | Source: dot.gov

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

WINNERS

U.S. Secretary of Transportation Anthony Foxx — After he challenged America’s mayors in January to improve pedestrian and bicyclist safety, Secretary Foxx this week unveiled a 30-year vision for the nation’s transportation policy “that promises to nudge the country off its 20th-century, highway-first course.”

NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio — Mayor de Blasio said in his State of the City address Tuesday that the City has committed $295 million for 13 new Select Bus Service routes, and that his affordable housing plan will focus development in transit-accessible neighborhoods.

New Jersey Assemblymembers Wisniewski, DeAngelo and Benson — The trio of Garden State lawmakers sponsored a recently-passed bill which allows counties and municipalities to implement traffic calming measures in local business districts without NJDOT approval.

Manhattan CB 12 & Hudson Heights safety advocates — Thanks to support from Community Board 12’s Transportation Committee and the efforts of local advocates, the Hudson Heights neighborhood in northern Manhattan will be designated a Neighborhood Slow Zone.

Stamford pedestrians and bicyclists — The city’s Board of Representatives unanimously approved a Complete Streets ordinance in January, making Stamford the third Connecticut municipality to formally embrace Complete Streets.

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Wednesday Winners (& Losers)

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

sweeney_color

New Jersey Senate President Stephen Sweeney | Photo: njleg.state.nj.us

WINNERS

New Jersey Senate President Stephen Sweeney — After several bridge closures, Sweeney declared that “[New Jersey’s] transportation priorities are mixed up,” and is now calling for the creation of a comprehensive transportation plan for the state.

Advocates for Albany reform — The arrest of New York Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver has put the state’s political system under scrutiny, generating widespread calls for reform.

“Gridlock” Sam Schwartz — The engineer and former NYC traffic commissioner has proposed a potential work-around for the 91st Street Marine Transfer Station’s truck traffic problem.

Amtrak — The agency has given cross-Hudson commuters a sliver of hope to cling to for the first time since Governor Christie shut down the ARC plan: Amtrak will be taking its first step toward the construction of two new rail tunnels with an environmental review this fall, and in the meantime they continue to lobby for funding for the Gateway project.

Nassau County Executive Ed Mangano — At least week’s State of Long Island breakfast event, Mangano mourned the loss of the county’s school zone speed camera program, insisting that it was successful while it lasted.

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Wednesday Winners (& Losers)

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

Photo: Brad Aaron

Photo: Brad Aaron

WINNERS

NYS Administrative Law Judge Sidney Fuchs — The NYS DMV has revoked the license of Ahmad Abu-Zayedeh, the driver who struck and killed 3-year-old Allie Liao in 2013, a decision that “reinforces the importance of DMV safety hearings as a venue to ensure that reckless drivers face consequences for killing other people.”

Brooklyn residents — In addition to plans to redesign the most dangerous road in Queens, major safety improvements have also been announced for Atlantic Avenue and Ocean Parkway, two of Brooklyn’s most dangerous roads.

Staten Island ferry commuters and bicycle riders — The Clove Road bike path will be one of 2015’s first Vision Zero improvement projects, meaning commuters can soon bypass the worsening parking situation at the St. George Ferry Terminal.

New Haven, CT bicyclists —  The announcement of a 2.1-mile cycle track to connect suburban neighborhoods to downtown businesses is great news in light of recent data showing that one in four New Haven families do not have access to a car. 

Princeton, NJ bicyclists — The Princeton Council voted 5-1 to replace on-street parking with two-way bike lanes along a section of Hamilton Avenue as a “baby step” toward a future comprehensive bike policy.

M60 SBS riders — According to new MTA data, Harlem’s M60 SBS has been wildly successful, reducing travel time to Laguardia Airport by nearly 15 percent and travel time along the Second Avenue dedicated bus lane by more than 30 percent.

Brooklyn Technical High School freshman Alison Collard de Beaufort — After several students’ lives were lost in traffic incidents, Alison founded the Vision Zero Youth Council to provide a venue for other students to become actively involved in street safety.

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Wednesday Winners (& Losers)

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

Elliot Sander speaks at a news conference on Jan. 13, 2015 in Grand Central Terminal with Jay Walder, center. | Photo: AM New York (Credit: Charles Eckert)

Elliot Sander speaks at a news conference in Grand Central Terminal with Jay Walder, center. | Photo: AM New York

WINNERS

New York City street users - At a press conference this morning, the City announced street safety gains made in Vision Zero’s first year, including the completion of more than 50 major street redesign projects, with 50 more slated for 2015, starting with the notorious Queens Boulevard. It was also announced that at 19 speed camera locations around the city, speeding dropped 59 percent from September to December.

Former MTA Chiefs Elliot Sander, Jay Walder and Peter Stangl – Joined by advocates, the three former MTA heads came together to demand a fully-funded MTA capital program, saying “The governor, the legislature, and the mayor must do the heavy political lifting to find new revenue sources to fund a $15 billion gap in the program.”

PATH riders, Hudson and Essex County residents, and businesses along PATH – The distressing proposal to eliminate overnight PATH service has been officially and indefinitely tabled following a meeting between Port Authority Chairman John Degnan, NJ state Senate President Stephen Sweeney and Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto.

New Canaan branch and Danbury line commuters – Connecticut Governor Dannel Malloy announced that Metro-North’s New Canaan branch will be receiving new, higher-capacity rail cars to offset the projected 44 percent increase in ridership over the next 15 years, and officials are looking at improvements to get Danbury line upgrades back on track.

New York City Council Member Ben Kallos – The council member is working to persuade the MTA to release more bus data more frequently in order to improve service for riders.

Stamford, CT – As part of Stamford’s Street Smart Initiative, the city is hiring a transportation planner as well as a new bureau chief for transportation, traffic and parking, to be charged with “preparation of a transportation master plan and transportation studies” and seeking state and federal grants.

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Wednesday Winners (& Losers)

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

Left: Connecticut DOT Commissioner James Redeker, Photo: ct.gov | Right: Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams, Photo: nysenate.gov

Left: Connecticut DOT Commissioner James Redeker, Photo: ct.gov | Right: Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams, Photo: nysenate.gov

WINNERS

Connecticut DOT Commissioner James Redeker — The ConnDOT head described the agency’s big plans for the years ahead, including more BRT: “I’d like to have CTfastrak East, CTfastrak West and CTfastrak North.”

Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams — When asked what Brooklyn needs more of in 2015, BP Adams replied “…Cars are so old school. We need to embrace bicycling as a transportation alternative, but the infrastructure needs to come with it. We need more bike lanes, buildings should have bus shelters, and we need to remake the entire borough based around that.”

Lower East Side resident William Mojica — Mr. Mojica spearheaded the installation of new pedestrian safety measures for his neighborhood.

Motorists and Pedestrians: Both in New York City and across the nation, driver and pedestrian fatalities have significantly declined.

U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders  Now the top Democrat on the Senate Budget Committee, Senator Sanders recently announced his plan to authorize a $1 trillion, multi-year infrastructure program to improve roads, bridges and transit.

The Federal Highway Administration — A YouTube video showing how the agency strives to “make biking and walking safer, affordable, more accessible, and an integral part of livable communities across America” complements their recent acknowledgement that driving is not as popular as it used to be.

Waterbury branch commuters — Weekend ridership has surpassed Metro-North’s projections after the addition of two late-night weekend trains on the Waterbury branch.

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Wednesday Winners (& Losers)

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

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo | Photo: governor.ny.gov

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo | Photo: governor.ny.gov

WINNERS

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo and Acting State Health Commissioner Dr. Howard Zucker — “I cannot support high volume hydraulic fracturing in the great state of New York,” said Zucker, prompting the Governor to announce a ban on the controversial energy extraction process, which would have had a major impact on transportation across the state.

Opponents of the Sterling Forest casino proposal — The state casino siting board announced its choice developers today, none of which will be located in Orange County – great news for those advocating against the Sterling Forest proposal.

Connecticut commuters — Governor Dannel Malloy toured the CTfastrak busway yesterday and stated that he felt confident that “the route will ease traffic jams on I-84, generate economic development and make commuters’ lives better.”

New York City Planning Commissioner Carl Weisbrod — Weisbrod recently promised that future city development would be approached through the lens of coordinated rational growth, with a focus on transit-oriented development.

U.S. Representatives Richard Neal, Rosa DeLauro and John Larson, Springfield Mayor Domenic Sarno, and Connecticut transportation commissioner James Redeker — The elected officials from both Massachusetts and Connecticut rode the rails to highlight recent upgrades to the regional transit line.

North Shore Bus Rapid Transit advocates — Councilwoman Debi Rose, The New York League of Conservation Voters and the Staten Island Chamber of Commerce have joined forces to raise awareness and grow support for expanding transit options to the rapidly-developing North Shore.

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