Friday, January 29, 2016

NYPD: No, you cannot save your parking spot with a chair/ garbage can/ etc.

Contrary to popular belief, you cannot save the parking spot you worked so hard to shovel out after the blizzard with a chair or garbage can.  According to Zach Tumin, NYPD Deputy Commissioner of Strategic Initiatives, not only can you not reserve your parking space, but if you try to do so, you may receive a summons.  Mr. Tumin's tweet comes after several days of heated debate on social media.

Monday, January 11, 2016

Cuomo proposes plan to improve roads & slash Thruway tolls

"Andrew Cuomo by Pat Arnow cropped" by Andrew Cuomo by Pat Arnow.jpeg: Pat Arnowderivative work: UpstateNYer - Andrew Cuomo by Pat Arnow.jpeg. Licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0 via Commons -
Photo Credit: Pat Arnow
Licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0 via Commons

According to the NY Times, Governor Andrew Cuomo proposed a five year, $22 billion plan to improve state roads and bridges this week.  The details will be outlined in the governor's upcoming State of the State address.  

Mr. Cuomo also proposed slashing tolls for the NY Thruway's most frequent users, while freezing tolls at their current rates for all other users, according to Transport Topics.  He also would like the freeze toll rates on the Tappan Zee bridge, and plans to spend $700 million to keep tolls at their current rates through 2020.  

"The thruway is a vital artery for commerce and transportation throughout upstate, so we are going to deliver major toll relief to New Yorkers," Cuomo said.  "We are going to reduce tolls for businesses and drivers who rely on it the most, eliminate them for farmers bringing their goods to market and freeze tolls for everone else until at least 2020."

Friday, January 8, 2016

Top 10 Ticketed Neighborhoods in NYC

Image credit: RentHop

Thanks to the the Village Voice and RentHop for compiling the top 10 most ticketed neighborhoods in NYC.  

  • 2655 Richmond Ave, Staten Island (4,668 tickets) - Staten Island Mall
  • 365 Bridge St, Brooklyn (3,374 tickets) - MetroTech Center, BellTell Lofts
  • 1330 1st Ave, Manhattan (2,866 tickets) - New York Presbyterian Hospital Employee Housing
  • 170 Joralemon St, Brooklyn (2,335 tickets) - The Packer Collegiate Institute
  • 448 W 16th St, Manhattan (2,239 tickets) - Manhattan Fruit Exchange, Chelsea Market
  • 99 Warren St, Manhattan (2,049 tickets) - 101-99 Warren Condo Complex and Shopping Center
  • 355 Bard Ave, Staten Island (2,022 tickets) - Richmond University Medical Center
  • 95-25 Queens Blvd, Rego Park (1,901 tickets) - North Shore LIJ Medical Group
  • 82-23 Broadway, Queens (1,788 tickets) - Verizon Wire Center
  • 204 Livingston St, Brooklyn (1,759 tickets) - Bridge Dry Cleaners

Have you ever received a ticket in these areas?

Friday, December 18, 2015

Vision Zero: Two years later, is it a success?

NYC vision zero
Photo Credit: New York City Pedestrian Safety Action Plan

As Vision Zero enters its third year, how has Mayor de Blasio's safety initiative fared so far?  According to the Wall Street Journal, traffic fatalities are down from 277 in 2013 to 217 at the end of 2015.  Pedestrian fatalities are also down from 181 in 2013 to  122 this year.

Although there was a higher than normal number of fatalities last month, the administration says they are still making progress thanks to better traffic enforcement by the NYPD, 120 new speed cameras, reducing the speed limit to 25, the redesign of the notoriously dangerous Queens Boulevard, and the closure of certain areas of Central Park and Prospect Park to cars.

Vision Zero's goal is to have zero traffic fatalities, which means the city needs to reduce traffic deaths by 40% every year for the program's remaining eight years.  So far, the city is short of its target, but the mayor's office says as more safety initiatives are added, the reductions will increase with more intensity.

Friday, November 20, 2015

Tappan Zee tolls to go cashless; Cuomo to suspend toll dodgers' registrations

Photo credit: Wikipedia

According to, the Tappan Zee bridge tolls are going to go cashless this April.  80% of the drivers using the Tappan Zee already use their EZ Pass to pay the toll, and the state is pushing for the remaining 20% to also pay electronically or face consequences.

Although currently the state doesn't do much to go after toll scofflaws, Gov. Cuomo's office announced this week that under a new rule, motorists with five or more unpaid tolls or fees within an 18 month period would have their vehicle registration suspended by the DMV until the balance is paid off.  The motorist would receive notices in the mail before their registration is suspended, giving them the opportunity to pay or dispute the violation.  No legislative approval is required to enact the new rule, and it could go into effect as early as January.  

Approximately $16.5 million per year is lost to chronic toll evaders.

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

NYC ticket blitz in effect until 11/22/15

Photo credit: Theodore Parisienne for the NY Daily News

According to the Daily News, the NYPD is conducting a dangerous driving crackdown through November 22 as part of Mayor de Blasio's Vision Zero program.  “It’s an initiative to encourage safe driving, and targeting in order of importance, speeding, failure to yield and cell phone use while driving,” Chief Thomas Chan, commanding officer of the NYPD Transportation Bureau, told the Daily News.

Last year's dangerous driving ticket blitz resulted in over 5,000 summonses passed out in two days, mostly for driving while using a cell phone. 

Monday, November 9, 2015

Report finds NY & NJ commuters pay 1/3 of all US tolls

According to the Daily News, a recent report by the International Bridges, Tunnels, and Turnpikes Association, New York and New Jersey commuters pay $4 billion in tolls (out of the $13 billion collected in the entire country) every year.  The report attributes the high cost to the tri-state area having the highest concentration of bridges and tunnels, and commuters themselves.  

The NJ Turnpike Authority collected the most revenue, coming in at $1.42 billion in revenue, with the Port Authority of NY & NJ coming in second place with $1.33 billion in toll revenue.

While there is a high concentration of bridges/ tunnels/ commuters in our area, the tolls themselves are undeniably steep.  Crossing the Verrazanno costs $16, while all Port Authority crossings cost $14, AND the next round of Port Authority toll hikes are set to take place December 1st.  

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