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Manhattan, NY - Pedestrian Islands Angers Motorists

Published on: September 2, 2008 09:54 AM
By: NY Post
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Photo Credit: NY Post - WALK THIS WAY: A pedestrian island at Broadway and 42nd Street.Manhattan, NY - With his congestion-pricing plan reduced to roadkill, Mayor Bloomberg is making city drivers miserable with a series of pedestrian-friendly projects.

One of the biggest headaches for them has been the Broadway pedestrian islands - plazas that stretch onto the road - a popular summer feature that Midtown denizens expect will be deserted come the cold weather, even as they still tie up traffic.

“In the winter, it won’t even be used,” griped office worker Jeffrey Gottlieb, 47. “Broadway already is down to 1½ lanes after you take the FedEx trucks making deliveries.”

Other road rage-inducing projects include a bus corridor down 34th Street, a bike lane on Ninth Avenue from West 16th to West 23rd streets, and a bike lane on Greenwich and Washington streets.

The most dramatic changes have been on Broadway, which, with the islands, has gone from four lanes to two from Times Square to Herald Square.
“I think it is completely useless . . . It doesn’t do anything for Midtown,” said New Jersey commuter Jason Silitsky, 24.

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But Chaim Dadi, 48, owner of Mr. Broadway Kosher at 38th and Broadway, said he has profited from an increase in the number of pedestrians.
“Traffic-wise, it’s not good, but who cares about traffic? I care about the store, and for my store, it’s good for my business. They can take my food outside,” he said.

Barbara Randall, executive director of the Fashion Center Business Improvement District, headquartered on 38th, said: “We haven’t notice any traffic problems. It’s down two to lanes, but it’s moving.” So far, she said, the month-old project is a success. “It was completely, fully used every single day since it was opened,” she said.

The Department of Transportation downplayed concerns that the projects would be underused after summer’s end. “Our streets, like parks and plazas, are used and enjoyed on a year-round basis. We will continue to monitor these improvements and make adjustments as required,” Commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan said.



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Read Comments (14)  —  Post Yours »

1

 Sep 02, 2008 at 11:35 AM Avi Says:

How many pedestrians on the island would have to be killed on accidents before this stupid "Bloomberg Island" is removed??

2

 Sep 02, 2008 at 11:55 AM FinVeeNemtMenSeichel Says:

This is no ordinary megalomaniac politician. I've never seen anyone so far removed from how the average person thinks.

3

 Sep 02, 2008 at 01:15 PM Genius Says:

Congestion pricing / tolls on east river is the way to go. I think it will reduce the traffic into the city - people will car share & use public transport more, plus it will raise extra funds.

These pedestrian islands are stupid though. Just you wait & see, when the next Mayor / Governor / Councilman comes into office he will have this AMAZING idea of easing congestion in the city by removing these islands - and everyone will be praising him for his ingenious solution for traffic in the city!!!

4

 Sep 02, 2008 at 01:50 PM Anonymous Says:

Bloomberg is a power hungry dictater that would put pepoles life at risk for him to get his way!! He should be arested!

5

 Sep 02, 2008 at 03:29 PM Anonymous Says:

HOW ABOUT THE PEDESTRIAN ISLANDS ON VANDERBILT AVENUE?! THEY TOOK 2 LANES + 1 PARKING LANE DURING RUSH HOUR AND TURNED IT IN TO ONE LANE! SO THE CYCLISTS CAN RIDE FREELY! WHAT HAPPENED TO "SHARE THE ROAD"? WHY CAN THEY NOT SHARE IT WITH US MOTORISTS WHO DO NOT HAVE THE GOOD FORTUNE OF BEING ABLE TO RIDE TO WORK.......

6

 Sep 02, 2008 at 04:12 PM Anonymous Says:

Although I think it's a stupid idea, I disagree with the first poster as far as safty is concerned. If you look at the pictures close enough you'll see that there are plants surrounding the islands. Those plants sit in concrete which act as a barrier between the ppl and the cars.

7

 Sep 02, 2008 at 04:20 PM Anonymous Says:

yes but ppl dont realize and just walk strait into the traffic

8

 Sep 02, 2008 at 04:43 PM Anonymous Says:

motorists can go jump in the lake.

there are ten thousand times more pedestrians than there are motorists who think they own the city. they are the most discourteous rudest drivers in the world and make life a dangerous hell for everyone on foot / not in a car.

let them whine all they want!

9

 Sep 02, 2008 at 07:00 PM Choizik Says:

Bloomberg should be impeached!

10

 Sep 02, 2008 at 08:03 PM Anonymous Says:

anon 4:43 PM go to the farm and pick up your bottle of milk and a cucumber, you dont need roads you can walk all the way back and forth a day or two and please dont stick out your fat thumb to hitchike when we pass by in our cars.

11

 Sep 02, 2008 at 09:44 PM Anonymous Says:

You guys are funny. It's almost as if you're railing against crosswalks. Anything that gets in the way of unlimited driving is bad, huh? You guys are in for a big reality check soon, I'll tell you that.

anon 8:03PM - come on, you know that's not what anon 4:43 was saying. don't be ridiculous.

12

 Sep 02, 2008 at 10:50 PM Anonymous Says:

i hope the next mayor can undo what this one is doing

13

 Sep 03, 2008 at 01:51 AM Anonymous Says:

Rumors have it that Bloomberg will make 13th Ave into a swimming pool with seperate hours for men and woman of course.

Simcha Felder is very excited about this new concept of swimming polls on major Avenues.

14th Ave will be made into a huge promenade with underground parking.

14

 Sep 03, 2008 at 12:06 PM Avrohom Abba Says:

Dear Mayor Bloomberg.
Thank you for your garbage can inspectors.
Thank you for your meter maids and out of control fines.
Now, you have the chutzpah to only make one Bloomberg walking island!!
I demand a bicycle island on Avenue J!
I demand a baby stroller island on Avenue M!
Now is the right time to hire another 500 welfare recipients and have them give out more tickets so that those of us who are dumb enough to pay taxes, should leave and continue the Large Escape. Only the high prices paid to your financial supporters in the real estate industry will try to convince you how the new Yuppies are bringing in so much tax money, while they quietly know that the typical old New Yorkers are running away in even greater numbers. Keep it up until one day you'll realize you can't collect taxes from recipients of welfare who are coming in for the Huge N.Y. Fillup.
Don't worry about us, we only voted for you.
Bye Bye N.Y.C.

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