New York Considers Banning Cars From Times Square

Timessquaretraffic

Fresh from his appearance on the Live Earth concert broadcast on Saturday, New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg is looking to tackle car congestion in one of the most well-known intersections in the world. Bloomberg is looking to hire a Danish consultant, Jan Gehl, who is responsible for tackling traffic issues in London and Copenhagen.

Gehl’s ideas for New York City are already public. He would ban most car traffic from Times Square, raise parking prices and reduce the number of parking spaces throughout the city. He’d also like to see certain avenues close down and replace streets with tree-lined areas for cafes. 

That sounds great and all, but we wonder how New Yorkers will respond. 

Auto-Matic Proposal (NYDailyNews.com)

By David Thomas | July 10, 2007 | Comments (14)
Tags: Pop Culture

Comments 

sean haley

I absolutely agree with that. New York's pedestrian population is beyond sidewalk capacity, specifically in key shopping and tourist areas like Times Square. I have always though Broadway was beyond its use as a road and it should be closed from 59th Street to Canal St and have it bus and taxi only and expand the sidewalk space. Broadway is at best two lanes wide and when you add deliveries, double parkers and buses stopping, its a waste of roadway that only adds congestion. -Herald Square Resident.

Dan

I've always loved the pedestrian only areas in cities and so I think this sounds great. The plan is a good one, but I don't know about reducing the parking spots. New Yorkers enjoy an excellent public transportation system (compared to the rest of the US), but reducing the ammount of parking as a whole and charging more for it doesn't sound like it will win many fans.

freethinker

Hmm. Let's think about it for a second. More traffic moved from high-traffic areas that get closed down. Other roads will then become more congested. Fewer parking spaces means more cars circling around for a space to avoid the higher parking prices, adding even more congestion. Sure, sounds good to me, but I'd suggest renaming it the 'how to increase congestion' plan.

J

Okay, higher parking fee, less road to drive, but same price for public transportation?
Why would people drive if the public transportation works?
It is not really solving the problem itself, but a suicide act for the politician.

Juan Carlos

over my dead body.

While we really need to institute congestion pricing, this may be one of the few things we can do despite the tyranny of Albany.

Because of upstate politicians stalling on the congestion pricing initiative,, we may lose $500,000,000 that would be refunded to NYC for bus and subway improvements. Just because a few of their constituents want to drive in New York City "for free".

What we really need in New York City is home rule.

While we really need to institute congestion pricing, this may be one of the few things we can do despite the tyranny of Albany.

Because of upstate politicians stalling on the congestion pricing initiative,, we may lose $500,000,000 that would be refunded to NYC for bus and subway improvements. Just because a few of their constituents want to drive in New York City "for free".

What we really need in New York City is home rule.

Aussie Boy

Why would you deny tourist to drive through Time Square when they arrive in NYC, because as a touristy person i like to drive around the town before i go out for the day or night don't think on it for one second, leave it be

Natives don't heed what a tourists want. Tough luck.

I think they should get rid of %50 of the Taxi's in NYC, and thats the solution, because half of the cars in NYC are empty taxis, %25 SUVs, %10 normal cars, and %15 are buses.

Joe

If you get rid of the taxi's all those people who cant find taxis would resort to taking their personal vehicles. In the end getting rid of taxis would have no effect.

freethinker

"Natives don't heed what a tourists want. Tough luck."

But they'll be more than happy to take tourists' money. Unless, hmm, maybe they'd rather have less traffic and less money. Some suburban shopping mall areas clogged with traffic from NYC might want to look into that.

"Why would people drive if the public transportation works?"

What if it doesn't work for some people? What if it takes double the commuting time, and it's not available at their specific commuting times and/or near their homes? Mass transit within the city is great, but remember, congestion pricing targets those coming in from outside the city.

LM

to freethinker:

You're absolutely right "congestion pricing targets those coming in from outside the city."

And that's the point. If you impose your congestion on me (say), you should compensate me for your impact on my life.

It's called internalizing externalities and is a basic economic concept. People who live and work in NYC have to suffer consequences of your decision to drive (congestion, asthma, et. al.), so you should pay for your decision. It's pretty simple and should actually be more widely implemented.

Funny how liberal "commie" folks support such 'radical' free-market ideas. HAHA!

Dan

LM-
Great post.
Economics is neither left or right, it's logical. But logic will always be attacked as political when the conclusion is inconvenient.

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