With over 8.5 million residents, New York City is home to one of the largest transit hubs in the world, serving more than five million subway riders and two million bus riders daily. Our district faces particularly high traffic density from Grand Central Terminal’s commuters to vehicles navigating Trump Tower’s security to pedestrians in Times Square. Preserving and enhancing our mass transit is vital to our economy, our neighborhoods, and our quality of life.
The long-awaited completion of Phase 1 of the Second Avenue Subway is a major step forward, but with our chronic traffic congestion, it is imperative we continue the expansion to create more relief for East Side residents. As part of my Livable City Platform, I will advocate for the completion of the 2nd Avenue Subway south of 72nd Street to bring better transit to the UES, Tudor City, Midtown East, Murray Hill and Stuyvesant Town areas. Strong advocacy will be especially critical with the threat of federal funding cuts, and I look forward to working with colleagues at the state and federal level to present a unified voice on securing funding for Phase 2.
Beyond these challenges, residents of our district have many transportation challenges that have yet to be addressed. Upper East Side high school student Emma Rehac is advocating for full fare Metrocards for all public school students to encourage access to extracurricular activities; while life-long Stuyvesant Town resident Raphael Stern is hoping that better coordination between City and State agencies will improve the process for securing disability parking permits for the elderly and people with mobility impairments. These issues, as well as preserving local bus service and expanding Select Bus Service stops are all part of my Transportation Platform, which you can read by clicking HERE.
While I’m glad to see increased bike usage as an eco-friendly mode of commuting and reducing traffic, we are also seeing increased conflicts between cyclists and pedestrians, which was highlighted in a recent conversation I had with life-long Stuyvesant Town resident Karen Reynolds. To safeguard both cyclists and pedestrians, I will propose new bike lanes that do not conflict with pedestrian traffic and additional enforcement for existing lanes, reducing traffic accidents and injuries for our community.
The impending closure of the L Train will create what the New York Times calls the largest disruption in New York City’s transit system’s history, resulting in major inconveniences for District 4 residents, delayed commutes and increased traffic congestion. The City has yet to provide detailed plans for addressing the shutdown, but as Council Member, I will urge a full examination of all options including adding ferry service, additional subway cars on neighboring lines, and expanding M14 bus service.
Our district is literally at the crossroads of the world, and effective mass transit is vital for our quality of life. As your Council Member, I will always fight for our community’s needs and to ensure our voices are heard so we can keep New Yorkers moving.