Open Thread Wednesday

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  • Cranberry Beret

    “Mayor de Blasio Announces Alternate Side Parking Reform June 23, 2020″

    As far as I can tell, this is really about cleaning NYC’s streets less frequently. Heckuva job, De Blasio!

    I think this has little to no effect in the Heights…we don’t seem to have any blocks — whether the handful of official alternate side parking spots or the more-common-in-the-Heights, faux ASP “alternating no parking days” — that currently have restrictions more than 1 day per week anyway. (Though Joralemon near Court has nighttime ASP multiple days, I believe.)

    DOT’s website mentions “amended regulations” – Rob Perris, have you seen those?

  • Teresa

    The Aveda salon on Montague St will not be re-opening. I got an e-mail saying that said that they couldn’t come to terms with the landlord and that the stylists there will be relocated to other J Scott salons in NYC

  • Robert Perris

    I have not. The mayor’s announcement (which you link to) used the same general language. One hypothesis is that amending the rules were made pursuant to the executive order issued in response to the Coronavirus outbreak.

  • Jorale-man

    I suspect it’s a preemptive strike given that the city is looking at laying off 22,000 municipal workers this fall. They’re looking to cut a $1 billion from the budget and fewer cleanings is one way to go about it. I hope you’re right that it won’t greatly impact the Heights. The streets haven’t been looking so tidy since they scaled back ASP this spring (especially the aforementioned Joralemon Street).

  • Humid

    Given cars are now parking on both sides of the street irrespective of ASP, one wonders when this all stops ? Today I saw a firetruck unable to go up Willow Street on account of cars on both sides of the street.

  • N.D.

    What is going on with the fireworks at night?! This is terrible… Does anyone know what can be done?

  • Cranberry Beret

    Montague Street from Hicks to Pierrepont Place is joining Open Streets. I think this is effective immediately (i.e. tomorrow morning at 8am)

  • CassieVonMontague

    DeBlasio is on it faster than you can say, “Alternate Side Parking is suspended!”

    “We’re going to go at it hard now and address it immediately,” the mayor said.

  • Cranberry Beret

    I agree. My criticism of De Blasio is not because I think we should ignore the looming budget crisis, which won’t be easy to fix. My criticism is that he’s going about this 100% the wrong way. We should not be encouraging MORE free parking (which is what suspending ASP does), and take dirtier streets as collateral damage. We should fund continued essential services like frequent street cleaning by ending free car warehousing.

    The city should be moving to immediately institute residential parking permits citywide. It would be relatively easy to make the fee means-tested and waive it for people who can’t afford it yet need to drive for work or because they live in a transit desert. For certain of our Heights neighbors, living in this transit-rich neighborhood, who have lots of disposable income and can afford $500/mo for a garage for their car that they use for convenience and pleasure, and simply park for free on the street because why not, the plan would either raise revenue or get vehicles off the streets. Both outcomes would be a win.

  • Cranberry Beret

    Agree. Another dumb De Blasio move. We should be setting up a system in these times to get cars OFF the streets, not encouraging more cars on the roads.

  • Cranberry Beret

    First in a long line of upcoming Montague Street closures, i’m afraid. The rents there are insane and almost no business can afford it operating at lower capacity.

  • El

    I originally saw “Montague St” in the announcement & thought oh wow, that’s nice for all the restaurants to get that extra space– but just that one block? I don’t understand the reasoning behind what streets they’re closing.

  • streeter

    Agreed. Plus more loading zones, more spots for services like zip car. Enough of the free parking.

  • Jorale-man

    Good points. The number of cars on my block that appear not to have been moved in weeks (gathering pollen and dust) is noticeable. Not an appropriate use of public space.

  • KXrVrii1

    I’m in favor of longer term reforms, including residential parking permits (flat fee, not means tested).

    But in this environment, it seems that encouraging driving, thereby reducing congestion on public transportation, is the right short term solution.

  • Cranberry Beret

    MTA’s 2020-2024 capital plan is in danger due to coronavirus

    It’s not immediately clear whether this will affect the Clark Street elevator replacement, which was scheduled to start later this year. The project is budgeted under the old 2015-2019 plan, but the vast bulk of its budget is unspent, so I assume it’s also at risk. MTA lists the current status as: “Schedule is under review due to COVID-19 crisis.”

  • Mike Suko

    So good I have to say – I LOVE IT!

  • Mike Suko

    I’d REALLY give 10-to-1 odds that it’s off the table for now…. It was a close call “on the merits,” and … everything has changed.

    It was almost funny to see someone float a proposal to build a pedestrian & bikes only bridge connecting Astoria to Roos. Isl. and then Manhattan TODAY. There are a lot of good ideas, of course – including that one – but REALITY does have a way of making itself heard … and bursting no small number of balloons along the way. Unless the 2 houses of Congress can cut a deal before election season REALLY gets under way, we in NYC are in for a world of pain.

    We clearly have a 2nd class Mayor, out of ideas for a full 5 years … at a time when we need a super-star in that role. It obviously doesn’t help that Cuomo hates him and we’re collateral damage in their feud … or that Trump – far more than Gerald Ford ever did – would find “Drop Dead” not nearly punchy enough in terms of expressing his feelings about us.

    As for work on the BQE, fuhg… YOU KNOW!

    Back to Clark St. – I think it was in the Times article “floating” the 22,000 layoffs planned – after “Let me borrow to pay for operating expenses” BdB proposal evoked “crickets” – where the head of “capital spending” for the MTA said, in effect, “EVERYTHING here is on hold at this point.” … Could ANYBODY be surprised about that??

  • Cranberry Beret

    Yes, I edited my original post with a more recent article that confirms ALL capital projects are on hold

  • Knight

    Actually, Blas needs to fill a $9B budget hole. But I always thought that the income from parking tickets more than offset the street cleaning & “meter maid” costs.

  • gc

    Wondering what you think ….
    I have 2 regular follow up Manhattan doctor visits (dermatologist and primary care) scheduled for late next week. I’m in my 70’s with a couple of preexisting conditions and I don’t own a car. Should I cancel or should I make the trip? Thanks for any feedback.

  • aeshtron

    I’m happy to see and hear the fireworks every night, it is wonderful : ) The fireworks send a clear message that we the people control the streets.

  • Heightsman

    there is a reason they’re illegal, people will get burned i hope you’re joking

  • aeshtron

    I’m not at all joking about being thrilled to see and hear the nightly illegal fireworks : )

    An average of 7.1 people die each year from fireworks in the USA. There are over 88,000 deaths annually in the USA that are alcohol related. Danger is all relative, but yes, fireworks, motor vehicles, alcohol and bathtubs can all be dangerous.

    Prohibition of fireworks, alcohol, cannabis, blow, horse, DMT, etc are all absurd IMHO.

    Hooray for the nightly illegal fireworks : )

  • El

    I don’t know if this will help as I’m in a lower risk group and your appts may be more or less urgent, but I’ve needed to go to the dentist for a while & this has been my thought process:

    The subway is still fairly empty right now, and from everything I’m reading, not terribly risky if everyone is wearing a mask (after all, Japan did okay for a long period of time with just masking & their trains are even more crowded). Calling a car and leaving the windows open is probably also ok, but traffic does seem to be getting worse so who knows if the car ride would be longer or shorter than the equivalent train ride, so maybe any benefits over taking the subway would be a wash.

    Taking public transit also will probably not get any safer before the end of the year or really any time before a vaccine is widely available, and as NYC reopens, cases are only going to go up. Therefore, maybe going to the dentist earlier is better, especially as I could put it off a month but probably not 6 months+.

    Ultimately I’m planning to make an appointment for midday on a weekday to avoid rush hour such as it is and take the train… I would definitely call your doctors though and see if they have any specific recommendations!

  • Remsen Street Dweller

    Why not phone your doctors and see what they advise? Perhaps, you can schedule a telemedicine appointment with them. If that’s not possible and you are advised to schedule appointments, I have been using a car service to go to see doctors in Manhattan. Remember, if things get dicey in the Fall, we could be under a lockdown once again. We just don’t know.

  • Jorale-man

    I agree with the others on this one. Cases locally could go down further this summer, but that’s purely a guess, and they may likely shoot up in the fall.

    I recently took an Uber to a dentist in midtown and back. Both drivers and passengers are required to wear masks and in one case, the driver had a clear plastic sheet separating front seat from back. I used lots of hand sanitizer, opened the window and changed clothes when I got home. In the end it was a little nerve-racking but it went fine (and I’m still evidently healthy, two weeks later). Definitely try and avoid rush hour whichever mode of transit you choose.

  • Mary Kate

    I took the ferry to the dentist. Fresh air and a little walk. A good alternative if you can make that work for you with the walk and location.

  • Mary Kate

    Whether you like them or not we should all agree the mess should be cleaned up…

  • Arch Stanton

    I agree with Aeshtron. Growing up here in the Heights I bought my first two packs of firecrackers when I was 5, at 7, I was able to buy M-80s, a rite of passage. My friends and I would blow them off in all sorts of creative ways, it was tremendous fun. It also built responsibility as we understood the power and potential danger of these devices. No one got hurt and the illegality only amplified the excitement. Starting at age 11 as Boy Scouts, we were taught how to shoot firearms at the Brooklyn Navy yard and on camping trips. Yes theses are dangerous things but are reasonably safe if competently used. The policy of banning and insulating people from anything dangerous only weakens character and thus society.
    I’m glad to hear some of that rebelliousness is making a comeback, it gives me hope.