Southern Brooklyn

The Commute: Why We Need A Moratorium On Future SBS Routes – Part 5 Of 5

THE COMMUTE: In Part 4, we discussed installing true Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) for the Woodhaven Boulevard Corridor. Now we will look at general problems with Select Bus Service (SBS), which the MTA and DOT ignore in their “infomercials” misnamed community involvement.

The Problem With Transfers

You are allowed to transfer between a local and express train without penalty, and even between express and local buses. So why, if you want to take the local bus to bring you closer to an SBS bus without an unlimited pass, you are deprived of your free transfer to another bus or train? Some drivers accept your SBS receipt, as if it were a transfer, when entering a second bus so you can use your MetroCard again on another bus or train without being charged. They are aware of the unfairness of the system. However, no MTA documentation states that this is official MTA policy and this tactic may only work if you board the SBS first.

The Problems With Enforcement

This is another major issue. Probably the huge majority of those receiving summonses deserve it either for fair beating or for driving in a bus lane. However, a substantial number of innocent people are trapped in a system wherein they are automatically found guilty in an enforcement mechanism called the Transit Adjudication Bureau (TAB). This is designed to frustrate the commuter by requiring them to waste an inordinate amount of time. Hearings are often postponed and require a person to lose at least a half-day’s pay so the incentive is to pay even if innocent. If the commuter does not publicize their case by going to an elected official or the media, they will most likely be found guilty no matter what the circumstances may be, such as the driver telling them that it was okay to board and pay at the next stop.

There have been cases in which drivers have been ticketed for driving in the bus lane during times when it is permitted, or given a citation literally 10 seconds before cameras were due to shut off. Lane markings frequently are worn out and small overhead signs placed at the corners cannot be seen after just making a turn. Those signs may be your only warning that you are driving in a bus lane on the lower portion of Nostrand Avenue where pavement markings have worn out in less than a year. (See lead picture) It is very easy for someone who has never heard of SBS to unknowingly find himself in a bus lane after making a turn and receive a fine varying between $115 and $150.

Many times, as any motorist knows, the only way to find a parking space is to see someone pulling out. However, if there is a bus lane in effect, even if no bus is being delayed, you are still subject to huge fine merely by stopping for 10 seconds while waiting to park. Our elected officials are being bombarded with such complaints. Is this fair?

Sometimes a bus passenger doesn’t notice the fare kiosks if they are placed at the rear of the bus stop and someone is approaching from the front, or both machines may be inoperable or out of a paper receipt. There have also been instances in which a machine has removed all your money from your MetroCard. Are you supposed wait for a local when that happens even if you do not have a spare card? (There is no local B44 in Williamsburg — only an SBS.) What about during a snow or ice storm? Muni-meters are sometimes isolated in mounds of snow or are completely glazed over in a sheet of ice. Couldn’t that also occasionally happen to SBS fare machines? These problems can be corrected, which I shall discuss later. Well-meaning citizens should not have to suffer financially.

The Problems With Exclusive Bus Lanes And Articulated Buses

While exclusive bus lanes can be a great tool to speed up bus trips and improve bus reliability, it does not mean that every street with a bus route needs an exclusive lane, full or part-time. A careful analysis must first be done using existing traffic data and projections using a computer model. Bus frequencies must also warrant an exclusive lane.

These lanes as well as articulated (long) buses also necessitate the removal of scarce parking spaces because the longer bus stops require more room. The DOT should survey the surrounding areas to determine if any of these eliminated parking spaces can be replaced with new legal spots within the vicinity. This could be accomplished by restoring parking where it has been banned unnecessarily, for example, because the original need for the parking ban no longer exists. This would minimize the impact to motorists and commercial establishments that suffer from reduced parking availability. The needs of bus riders are no more important than the needs of everyone else.

What Should Be Done

State legislators recently requested that, during a blizzard or ice storm, meter regulations be suspended, since the areas around muni-meters are not cleared. It may be impossible to climb over mounds of snow or use a meter covered with a sheet of ice. Isn’t the same true with SBS fare machines?

Payment should be allowed on the bus using a MetroCard when this happens. There could be a temporary cover over the MetroCard slot, which could be removed when there is a problem with the machines. Passengers could be given paper receipts from the driver to indicate that the fare has been paid, or else inspectors could be equipped with scanners to check the MetroCard to determine whether a fare was paid. Problems at TAB must be corrected.

The entire truth about SBS needs to be told — not only its positive aspects. Misleading and incorrect information should not be disseminated. A coalition similar to the one in favor of SBS needs to be formed to prevent the fatal mistake of BRT on Woodhaven Boulevard. This will not be easy since political deals have already been cut.

Even those opposed to SBS on Woodhaven Boulevard are reluctant to step up to the plate. Recently, I had a private conversation with one of the elected officials in Queens who is convinced that SBS along Woodhaven will be a disaster, but will not take a public stand because he or she believes that it is a done deal and any effort to try to stop SBS will be a waste of time.

The MTA transfer policy must be made clear and no one should be penalized for taking a local service to access an SBS bus if that is what they want to do, since SBS stops are spaced as far as a mile apart.

Implementation of the B46 SBS should be delayed until the results of the B44 SBS are released and the public has had an opportunity to review it. We do not need a second Brooklyn SBS route if the first one has not been proven successful and has exhibited problems that have not been resolved.

Lane Markings and signage need to be improved.

The Need For Transparency

  1. The DOT and the MTA should not be allowed to make wild allegations regarding SBS and BRT without providing adequate proof.
  2. We must see the data from NYCT Transit’s forecasting model and DOT’s traffic model as well as the assumptions made to produce that data.
  3. Traffic counts and projections must be provided to substantiate that traffic will not be significantly adversely affected before general traffic lanes are removed and more left turns banned from Woodhaven Boulevard.
  4. Requests from the public for data need to be provided.
  5. There has to be additional follow-up after the initial first year reports.
  6. We need to know the cost for enforcement and if this cost is more or less than the revenue it produces from fines, and proof that fare evasion has been reduced due to SBS.
  7. We need to know the true costs of SBS and BRT so that an intelligent decision can be made whether the benefits outweigh the costs. Federal money must not be regarded as free money.
  8. It should be easier to learn about proposed SBS routes and meetings need to be better publicized. The MTA website is too cumbersome. DOT’s site is better if you think to look there.
  9. DOT asks you to e-mail them to learn how to join a Community Advisory Committee (CAC). In reality, you cannot join a CAC because they are not open to the public, only to elected officials, Community Boards, neighborhood groups, civic organizations and major institutions; only one member from each group is chosen.
  10. It must be proven that more are helped than hurt by SBS by considering everyone’s needs.

Until all this is done, there should be a moratorium on new SBS and BRT routes. The SBS can be beneficial and is a powerful tool to speed up trips for bus riders. However, at this point, there are too many unanswered questions to blindly move forward and implement 13 new routes in fewer than two years.

The Commute is a weekly feature highlighting news and information about the city’s mass transit system and transportation infrastructure. It is written by Allan Rosen, a Manhattan Beach resident and former Director of MTA/NYC Transit Bus Planning (1981).

Disclaimer: The above is an opinion column and may not represent the thoughts or position of Sheepshead Bites. Based upon their expertise in their respective fields, our columnists are responsible for fact-checking their own work, and their submissions are edited only for length, grammar and clarity. If you would like to submit an opinion piece or become a regularly featured contributor, please e-mail nberke [at] sheepsheadbites [dot] com.

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173 COMMENTS

  1. Probably the huge majority of those receiving summonses deserve it either for fair beating or for driving in a bus lane.

    “…but let me scare you with a bunch of hair-raising stories about the tiny minority.”

    Muni-meters are sometimes isolated in mounds of snow or are completely glazed over in a sheet of ice. Couldn’t that also occasionally happen to SBS fare machines?

    Does it happen to SBS machines, or are you just making shit up again?

    While exclusive bus lanes can be a great tool to speed up bus trips and improve bus reliability, it does not mean that every street with a bus route needs an exclusive lane, full or part-time.

    Strawman.

    A careful analysis must first be done using existing traffic data and projections using a computer model.

    “And don’t forget that motorists come first, so general automobile traffic has an absolute veto over any bus lanes.”

    The needs of bus riders are no more important than the needs of everyone else.

    Nor are they any less important, your obvious priorities notwithstanding.

    Misleading and incorrect information should not be disseminated.

    THE IRONY, IT BURNS!

    1.The DOT and the MTA should not be allowed to make wild allegations regarding SBS and BRT without providing adequate proof.

    Does that apply to you, too?

  2. “…but let me scare you with a bunch of hair-raising stories about the tiny minority.”

    So the tiny minority does not matter? Then why do you make such a big deal about how difficult it is for a pedestrian to cross the street safely. Wouldn’t you say that less than .00000001% of the pedestrian crossings result in injury or death? Why is that “tiny minority” so important but the “tiny minority” of those who are innocent and pay or are found guilty not important? I can assure you my “tiny minority” is much greater than your “tiny minority”.

    The truth is that even tiny minorities can be important sometimes.

    Does it happen to SBS machines, or are you just making shit up again?

    If it happens to muni-meters and it does because they showed video on TV of muni-meters covered over in sheets of ice and surrounded by piles of snow. We already know that bus stops are not cleared of snow much of the time, so it stands to reason that the same could happen to these fare machines. There is no big overhang that would prevent ice from forming on them. But logic has never been your strong point.

    “And don’t forget that motorists come first, so general automobile traffic has an absolute veto over any bus lanes.”

    Making things up again? I never said or implied that even once.

    Nor are they any less important, your obvious priorities notwithstanding.

    Never said they were any less important. Quit fabricating again since you are unable to debate any of the points I really did make. I clearly stated everyone should be treated equally. In your mind “everyone” means only bus riders. I can’t help that.

    Misleading and incorrect information should not be disseminated.

    Well, that seems to be all that you are doing. You haven’t yet argued a single point without misquoting or taking things out of context. Yes, the irony does BURN!

    I have not made one single wild allegation without presenting the facts or logic behind it. Yet you keep criticizing me but ignore all DOT’s errors and misstatements like Woodhaven Blvd is 160 feet wide where pictured in their report. Why don’t you measure it for yourself if you don’t believe it is really 125 feet wide? You don’t have to take my word for it. Yet you blindly insist every DOT and MTA statement is correct while everything I say is incorrect. I really don’t know why I keep wasting my time with you.

  3. Your articles often raise good points. Your conclusions can be a bit wacky though.

    Transfers involving an SBS aren’t fair? Do many make that transfer, or want to but avoid it because they don’t want to pay a double fare? You’ve brought up issues with transfers before not involving SBS, but would you argue that no new local or limited bus or subway route should be added until that problem is dealt with?

    You’re not the only person to complain about the TAB.

    http://secondavenuesagas.com/2014/08/07/the-trouble-with-the-transit-adjudication-bureau/

    It’s something that should be dealt with. Using it as an excuse to not take away lanes on Woodhaven because you’re worried about the traffic impact there is a stretch though.

    If parking with an offset bus lane is too difficult for some to manage then the city could make sure there are enough metered spaces around the corner that a motorist can park there instead. Cost of parking needs to be hiked to make sure that nobody feels the urge to sit in a bus lane (or general traffic lane) and wait for someone to leave. Double parking resulting from mispriced parking is a problem city wide.

    If spots are removed to make room for articulated buses or bus lanes then the city should add spots where feasible, assuming no safety impact. But you likely won’t find many spots that way. A more realistic approach is to expect more metered spaces, and priced higher. But you’re right, the city should better manage the parking situation. That doesn’t mean plentiful free/cheap parking. It means make sure there is a high enough vacancy rate to keep cars from having to circle the block endlessly looking for a spot, or sitting double parked waiting for someone to move.

    Muni-meters are sometimes isolated in mounds of snow or are completely glazed over in a sheet of ice. Couldn’t that also occasionally happen to SBS fare machines?

    Yes, and yet David Greenfield only cares about making it easier for motorists to park in icy conditions, not about bus riders who have trouble paying a fare.

    http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/city-councilman-meters-shut-snow-article-1.2099913

    I don’t see anyone using that as an excuse to get rid of parking meters when there isn’t any snow or ice the way you want to get rid of SBS.

    If you want to allow people to pay when boarding at least put fare payment machines at each door. If there are really just a few days a year when it would be needed just give the fare inspectors those days off. Or better have them clear out each payment machine before any enforcement begins.

    Lane markings aren’t clear? Add more signs or pavement marking to make it clear, where possible avoid the issue by using physically separated lanes where it will be easier to keep drivers from thinking they can enter the lane. It’s a minor problem that should be fixed, not reason to tell bus riders they don’t get to see any improvements.

    We do not need a second Brooklyn SBS route if the first one has not been proven successful and has exhibited problems that have not been resolved.

    The actual launch of each SBS line is a small part of the whole. Have long term capital projects been finished on any route so far? SBS routes are small enough projects that they can be run as experiments. If after a few years any are a disaster then you can retool them. But you need to wait a while to see how drivers react to reduced capacity, either by travelling at different times, travelling by different routes, travelling by different modes, or avoiding trips all together. I’d wager congestion on Woodhaven will be worse when construction begins than it will be months later when the SBS line launches.

    There is a built environment that massively favors those with cars. Undoing this is an issue of fairness. If someone with a car can make a trip in ten minutes, but a bus rider needs to set aside thirty that’s a problem. Because that bus rider has limited mobility. Increasing their mobility by speeding their trip is a good thing. It sets a higher minimum standard available to all. Even if your unsubstantiated claims that in aggregate fewer minutes of travel are saved by bus riders than lost by motorists are correct, it is equitable to raise that minimum standard of mobility by speeding the bus rider’s trip.

  4. Since you do often ask legitimate questions I will respond.

    Transfers involving an SBS aren’t fair? Do many make that transfer, or want to but avoid it because they don’t want to pay a double fare? You’ve brought up issues with transfers before not involving SBS, but would you argue that no new local or limited bus or subway route should be added until that problem is dealt with?

    Since SBS stops are sometimes spaced a mile apart, someone should not be deterred from using one because they are no able to or do not want to walk an extra half mile after they may have already walked a quarter-mile to get to the route. Yes, if you only need one transfer, it is not a problem. But why should it cost you an extra fare to ride the SBS bus for a trip you were previously able to make for one fare before SBS by making only one transfer to another bus when you now need two because you can’t walk to the SBS?

    We have no idea how many pay an extra fare or how many avoid it. My guess would be that many would just take the slower local and avoid it. Would saving six or ten minutes be worth $2.50? The MTA does not even provide separate ridership statistics for locals and SBS buses. This is only one of over 10 problems that need to be resolved which is why I am requesting a moratorium. The MTA has not even admitted this is a problem. Whenever you have bus drivers doing one thing when the official policy says something else, you have a problem. An SBS receipt is meant to be proof of payment for the SBS route, not to be used as a transfer for another route. If that should be the case, the MTA needs to acknowledge that.

    You also have special transfers that have been set up that do allow for a third transfer like the S79 to the B1 and then a third bus. However, this was only publicized in the initial press release. Someone moving into the neighborhood now would never know and might plan an alternate longer route thinking the route not used would cost two fares when it only would cost one. There clearly are fare issues that need to be resolved. How many more SBS routes should be implemented before we address these issues?

    Cost of parking needs to be hiked to make sure that nobody feels the urge to sit in a bus lane (or general traffic lane) and wait for someone to leave. Double parking resulting from mispriced parking is a problem city wide.

    This is really a separate issue. I would say that up to $1.50 an hour is enough already, not to mention that to avoid a summons you have to buy more time that you need and the city resells your bought time not used to someone else, in effect getting paid twice. Anyway, double parking for 15 seconds to drop someone off or pick someone up isn’t that big of a deal on most streets. It is the trucks who sit double parked for up to three hours that is the real problem. They are not ticketed because the law allows them to stand there if they are loading or unloading expeditiously. But no police officer is ever watching to make sure they are being “expeditious” which still could take several hours depending on how much merchandise is being delivered. When it is a fruit truck, it usually means the entire vehicle being unloaded. On Brighton Beach Avenue there are dozens of fruit stores so the street is always blocked with trucks delaying cars and buses.

    I don’t see anyone using that as an excuse to get rid of parking meters when there isn’t any snow or ice the way you want to get rid of SBS.

    Show me where I said anything about “getting rid of SBS”. I have merely been pointing out problems that need to be resolved.

    If you want to allow people to pay when boarding at least put fare payment machines at each door. If there are really just a few days a year when it would be needed just give the fare inspectors those days off. Or better have them clear out each payment machine before any enforcement begins.

    Lane markings aren’t clear? Add more signs or pavement marking to make it clear, where possible avoid the issue by using physically separated lanes where it will be easier to keep drivers from thinking they can enter the lane. It’s a minor problem that should be fixed, not reason to tell bus riders they don’t get to see any improvements.

    Yes, if they are all such minor problems, it should be no trouble to fix them. All I said was fix them and the other problems, then we can proceed with SBS. “Moratorium” does not mean stop forever, but only until the problems are resolved.

    SBS routes are small enough projects that they can be run as experiments.

    I guess then the MTA can return the fare machines and buses purchased if the route doesn’t work out. Sorry, but these are not experiments at a cost of $200 million for full BRT. They are a waste of scarce capital funds if the service has to be ripped up because it doesn’t work. Isn’t it better that we do a real study of what is best for the Woodhaven Corridor by first considering the alternatives instead of rushing into something so the mayor can use it as a chip toward re-election?

    I’d wager congestion on Woodhaven will be worse when construction begins than it will be months later when the SBS line launches.

    So what would that prove? Congestion is always worse during construction. But we are not even talking about a short term inconvenience. I never even brought up the construction issue. It is the long term inconvenience that matters here.

    If someone with a car can make a trip in ten minutes, but a bus rider needs to set aside thirty that’s a problem.

    I hate to break it to you, but SBS won’t solve that problem. Thirty minutes is pretty good for a bus trip. Cars will always be faster than buses for most trips. The problem occurs when the trip takes 20 minutes by car and 90 minutes by bus. The way to change that is by improving bus routes and reliability to make buses more competitive. It is not to increase the car travel time to 50 minutes by adding a bus lane and reduce the bus travel time to 70 minutes.

    Even if your unsubstantiated claims that in aggregate fewer minutes of travel are saved by bus riders than lost by motorists are correct, it is equitable to raise that minimum standard of mobility by speeding the bus rider’s trip.

    No matter how you try to spin it, nothing should be implemented that would hurt people than would be helped. Everyone’s time should be treated equally. Bus riders are no more important than drivers. And drivers are no more important than bus riders. And with all the models, why shouldn’t the MTA and DOT be able to show beforehand that more people will be helped than hurt so I wouldn’t have to make “unsubstantiated claims.”

  5. Allan Rosen, that is an excellent five-part series on the secret flaws of Select Bus Service. A couple of objective questions: 1) Why is the MTA Eagle Team target random stations across the SBS Network, anytime and anywhere 2) What is the overall process if a MTA Bus Rider do not have a valid ticket? 3) With the issue of fare evasion increases, are the MTA will hire more impartial members of the Eagle Team? Why or Why not?

  6. Thank you Pedro for comments. Regarding your questions, it would not be proper for me to speculate how the MTA chooses to deploy its Eagle Team. 1) It may be random or they may be deployed depending on where fare evasion is worse. 2) Someone without a valid ticket is not supposed to board the bus. Period. There are no ands ifs or buts. But as I showed, this may not be practical if there is no local operating at that bus stop or there may be extenuating circumstances which apparently do not matter as far as the Eagle Team is concerned. 4) The MTA is maintaining that SBS reduces fare evasion, so I can’t just assume it is on the rise. I do not understand what you mean that the Eagle Team needs to be more “impartial.” I do believe that if a bus driver instructed someone to board a bus and pay at the next stop, they should not receive a summons if that is what they do.

  7. 1, 2, 4?

    I think this explains the mathematical errors we’ve seen in some of Allan’s posts.

    🙂

  8. Thank you so much with your response. I will be certainly looking forward for a concise discussion on other transit issues that you are addressing.

  9. Really? Is that the best you can come up with? I think measuring a 125 foot street as 160 feet as DOT did is a little more serious than an obvious typo.

  10. Is that the best you can come up with?

    Those of us who’ve read Andrew’s other posts know it isn’t. Geez, get a sense of humor.

  11. So the tiny minority does not matter? Then why do you make such a big deal about how difficult it is for a pedestrian to cross the street safely. Wouldn’t you say that less than .00000001% of the pedestrian crossings result in injury or death? Why is that “tiny minority” so important but the “tiny minority” of those who are innocent and pay or are found guilty not important? I can assure you my “tiny minority” is much greater than your “tiny minority”.

    The truth is that even tiny minorities can be important sometimes.

    “Scare you” were the operative words in my quote-that-wasn’t-a-quote. The point is that you’re emphasizing something that’s unlikely to affect more than a few people in order to make it seem that it is the normal order of things. The fact that you initially pointed out that the “huge majority” of people receiving summonses actually deserved them doesn’t outweigh the fact that you spent about ten times as many words talking about the tiny minority as you spent on the huge majority. That’s a distorted picture you’re painting there.

    If it happens to muni-meters and it does because they showed video on TV of muni-meters covered over in sheets of ice and surrounded by piles of snow. We already know that bus stops are not cleared of snow much of the time, so it stands to reason that the same could happen to these fare machines. There is no big overhang that would prevent ice from forming on them. But logic has never been your strong point.

    Nothing wrong with my logic; I’m just looking for evidence that this actually happens, and that it’s not you speculating about a non-problem once again.

    Making things up again? I never said or implied that even once.

    You’ve been careful not to ever say it outright. You imply it in the majority of your columns, which is amusing, but the fact that you don’t even realize you’re implying it is even funnier.

    Never said they were any less important. Quit fabricating again since you are unable to debate any of the points I really did make. I clearly stated everyone should be treated equally. In your mind “everyone” means only bus riders. I can’t help that.

    How about this comment? I quote: “You cannot simply look at the advantages for bus passengers and ignore the impacts on everyone else or argue a bus passenger’s time is worth more, because a better argument can be made that a driver’s time is worth more since their incomes are higher.”

    But nice try.

    Well, that seems to be all that you are doing. You haven’t yet argued a single point without misquoting or taking things out of context. Yes, the irony does BURN!

    Actually, I’ve done neither. But again, nice try.

    Yet you keep criticizing me but ignore all DOT’s errors and misstatements like Woodhaven Blvd is 160 feet wide where pictured in their report. Why don’t you measure it for yourself if you don’t believe it is really 125 feet wide? You don’t have to take my word for it.

    So you’re now telling me that while the traffic on Woodhaven is so heavy that it requires four lanes for general traffic movement, it is nevertheless so light that it would be safe for me to measure the width of the street myself? Interesting.

  12. Yes, I can, but it just so happens that in this case fdtutf was exactly correct. It was a joke (hence the smiley, which I rarely use). I’ll write more when time permits.

  13. The local to SBS transfer issue is the same that existed when the SBS was called “Limited”, no worse. Why single out SBS?

    If a bus lane is active up to a certain time, then you’re subject to the fine up to that time. What’s so difficult to comprehend about that?

    Right turns are normally supposed to be made from the right lane into the right lane, bus lane or no bus lane, then you move left. What’s so confusing about that?

    Articulated buses run on SBS and non-SBS lines.

  14. The Bedford / Rodgers Bus lane is horrible. It makes normal traffic flow impossible. Double parked cars including police station parked cars create horrible traffic jams along the route. Also the drivers who don’t acknowledge the bus lane us it as a race track. I think the city is using this tactic to tell us to get rid of our cars.

  15. Maybe the city is using this tactic to tell some drivers (I don’t mean you) that they need to learn how to drive. That would include the police, although you’d think the city could exert some control over the police if it cared to.

  16. Twice each week I drive down rodgers from flatbush to 5 blocks past fulton. The passenger lanes are packed while the bus lane is empty. In an already crowded city they took up a lot of spots building the Artick bus stops. It is like 5th Avenue in Manhattan. One big Parking Lot. The issue is not how people drive, but keeping all lanes open so traffic can flow. When the past mayor did not get his pricing plan, he decided to make it as painful as possible to travel by car in the city. And That he did… Everywhere you go it is a pain in the neck., like the entire length of 4th Avenue, Prospect Park with the bike lanes, Ocean Avenue. Not to mention all the red light cameras and speed cameras you now need to worry about. Time to get away from this crappy city. Even the Zero Vision plan makes driving buses 10 time more stressful.

  17. Some SBS bus stops are spaced much further than Limited stops, like up to a mile apart. No Limited stops are that far apart so the need to take a local first to access the faster bus is less of a problem with Limiteds than SBS, which is why I singled it out.

    Grace periods are common practice for a lot of things. Not everyones clock is perfectly synchronized. Asking someone to do a mental calculation at the beginning and end of the period takes away from someone’s concentration on driving and could be dangerous.

    As far as right turns are concerned, you are only allowed into the bus lane to make the next available right turn, not if you just made a right turn. If the camera sees you in the bus lane, it has no idea if you just made a right turn. Also, if you enter the bus lane, traffic may not permit you to immediately leave the bus lane. If you stand there to wait for traffic to clear, you are blocking the lane and subject to a fine. So when making a right turn, you need to make the turn into the traffic lane, not the bus lane. It’s not that simple and is confusing to some. You are even confused.

    Articulated buses run on SBS and non-SBS lines.

    Never said anything to the contrary.

  18. That was a complaint initially. Well apparently it was never solved.

    If the police won’t even acknowledge the bus lane, why should other drivers?

    If someone is double parked in front of you, or if your lane is at a standstill for several minutes and there are no buses in the bus lane, you are just supposed to wait. Any wonder why cars will temporarily enter the bus lane and risk a fine?

  19. Exactly. Rather than keeping traffic flowing, the city’s new priority is to make everyone travel even more slowly. An average speed of less than 20 mph for a major arterial is ridiculous. I have been saying tha all along and been catching a lot of flack for it from a few individuals who act as if they are the majority. It is those who don’t drive who have no regard for those who do.

  20. Asking someone to do a mental calculation at the beginning and end of the period takes away from someone’s concentration on driving and could be dangerous.

    If you can’t do what’s required in order to comply with traffic rules, then either pay the resulting tickets and shut up, or stop driving. Asking people to mind when they enter a bus lane (that isn’t full-time exclusive) is entirely reasonable. If you’re on the cusp or not certain, don’t use the bus lane. It isn’t the only one available.

  21. Exactly. Rather than keeping traffic flowing, the city’s new priority is to make everyone

    who drives a car

    travel even more slowly.

    Tell me again about your lack of bias.

    And the city’s priority is actually to improve transportation for people who don’t drive cars, after decades of neglecting them shamefully. It’s unfortunate that that offends you.

    An average speed of less than 20 mph for a major arterial is ridiculous. I have been saying tha all along and been catching a lot of flack for it from a few individuals who act as if they are the majority. It is those who don’t drive who have no regard for those who do.

    In New York, again, people who don’t drive are in the majority. And as for the lack of regard, I think you can be pretty sure that it works both ways. Or perhaps you’d care to cite some instances of the tender care evinced by motorists toward other road users? NOTE: Refraining from killing people is not “tender care.”

  22. You have a definite problem in understanding the difference between the words “fairness” and the “bias”, Your overwhelming bias against anyone who drives is so loud , it screams bias. I, on the other hand am only talking about fairness and treating everyone equally, yet you have a real problem with that and call it “bias”.

    Being against cars traveling even more slowly so that is takes forever to get somewhere by car is not exhibiting any bias. Not caring about it, is being biased.

    In New York, again, people who don’t drive are in the majority.

    So what? Does that mean that the minority can just be ignored because they don’t count? Or is that only true when the minority are car owners?

    You would have no problem improving bus average bus speeds from 10 to 12 mph if in order to do that, you would have to slow car average travel speeds from 20 to 10 mph even if there are fewer people in buses than in cars. NOW THAT IS BIASED. And that is what you are, not me. I am for bus riders, auto drivers and even bicycle riders when it makes sense. I was opposed to Canarsie’s rejection of proposed bicycle lanes on E 94 and E 95 Street. I am not for things that have not been proven. All I have asked for is proof.

    On Woodhaven Blvd the MAJORITY are drivers. Bus passengers are in the minority at all times of the day. Yet you are not willing to ignore THAT minority. You only mention the word minority when it applies to auto owners and ignore who is in the minority when it applies to bus riders. AND YOU CALL ME BIASED?

  23. Now you tell me if you were a driver and not from the area, would you be able to make out that bus lane sign in the first picture? Or is your response that it is such a small minority of drivers that ate not from the area, that it doesn’t matter. Or that everyone should be reading the MTA and DOT websites to be familiar with all the bus lanes and hours, and if they are not able to do that, they should not be driving?

  24. “Scare you” were the operative words in my quote-that-wasn’t-a-quote.

    I was not trying to scare anyone. I was just laying out the facts. Never said it was the normal thing, in fact I indicated the opposite.

    you spent about ten times as many words talking about the tiny minority as you spent on the huge majority.

    At least I mentioned the huge majority. In your incessant rants how dangerous it is to cross a street and every time you do so you take your life in your hands, you have never once mentioned that 99.9999999% of the street crossings are completed without any incident. And you have the nerve to say that I use scare tactics?

    I’m just looking for evidence that this actually happens,

    If there were evidence, you would just dismiss it because it only happens “a minority” of the time so it doesn’t matter.

    You’ve been careful not to ever say it outright.

    I have never stated explicitly or implicitly that drivers come first. Just count all the articles I have written demanding better bus service and the improvements for drivers, and you will see that the bus improvement articles greatly outnumber any improvements I have requested for drivers. In fact the only improvements for drivers I have suggested is the reduction of bottlenecks which you opposed because you say any improvements to speed auto travel will result in someone purchasing a car which is another one of your ridiculous statements. It takes a lot more than the elimination of one bottleneck or creation of one new parking space for someone to decide he needs to purchase an automobile.

    How about this comment?

    There is absolutely nothing wrong with that comment. I was simply pointing out the absurdity of only considering a bus rider’s time and ignoring everyone else’s. I was trying to say if you think no one else’s time is worth anything, you could make an argument if you wanted to that someone’s time with a higher income is worth more than someone’s time who has a lower income, although I wasn’t going to go that far. In fact that is how the courts work. If someone is involved in a serious injury and is no longer able to work, the court in deciding the amount of an award considers how much he could have earned for the rest of his probably life had the injury not occurred. They don’t ask if he rode the bus or drove a car and only award money to bus riders because the time of someone who drives a car is worth nothing. Yet that is what you believe.

    So you’re now telling me that while the traffic on Woodhaven is so heavy that it requires four lanes for general traffic movement, it is nevertheless so light that it would be safe for me to measure the width of the street myself? Interesting.

    Now you are getting ridiculous. First, you sound as if the traffic never stops. If that was the case, one could never cross the street and that isn’t the case. Second, you could measure the width of the street using the pictures in the DOT reports counting the horizontal bars at the intersections and doing some multiplication. Each horizonal stripe is one foot wide and there are two feet between horizontal stripes. So by simply counting the number of horizontal stripes and multiplying by three, you have the street width. At Metropolitan Avenue, there are 44 lines, so multiply it by three and you have 132 feet. (DOT says it’s 130 feet which is close enough.) Assume each lane is 11 feet wide according to the stripes. (Some may be a little less.) Now take the number of lanes in the DOT picture of the part of the road with service roads. There are six lanes in the main roadway and there would be four more in the service roads if parking were banned. That is a total of ten lanes. Ten times eleven is 111. Add in the islands and center divider, and you get would be another 15 feet or a total of 126 feet . That is 34 feet short of what DOT claims, (enough to fit in three more lanes). And since they are measuring curb to curb at Metropolitan, there is no reason to assume they are doing anything different here.

  25. Being against cars traveling even more slowly so that is takes forever to get somewhere by car is not exhibiting any bias. Not caring about it, is being biased.

    “Favoring motorists is not exhibiting any bias. Not favoring motorists is being biased.”

    I CANNOT EVEN WITH THIS.

    You would have no problem improving bus average bus speeds from 10 to 12 mph if in order to do that, you would have to slow car average travel speeds from 20 to 10 mph even if there are fewer people in buses than in cars. NOW THAT IS BIASED.

    Thinking that bus riders’ trips should be as fast as motorists’ is bias? What exactly is the bias there?

    I am for bus riders, auto drivers and even bicycle riders when it makes sense. I was opposed to Canarsie’s rejection of proposed bicycle lanes on E 94 and E 95 Street. I am not for things that have not been proven. All I have asked for is proof.

    The problem is that the proof you’re looking for in each case is proof that motorists will not suffer any disadvantages, ever. That’s unreasonable, and it’s a bias.

    On Woodhaven Blvd the MAJORITY are drivers. Bus passengers are in the minority at all times of the day. Yet you are not willing to ignore THAT minority. You only mention the word minority when it applies to auto owners and ignore who is in the minority when it applies to bus riders.

    Again: Over the course of the entire day, about two-thirds of the users of Woodhaven are motorists. It’s not unreasonable to expect them to content themselves with three-quarters of the road.

    AND YOU CALL ME BIASED?

    Yes. Yes, I do.

  26. I was not trying to scare anyone. I was just laying out the facts. Never said it was the normal thing, in fact I indicated the opposite.

    The initial lip service you paid to the “huge majority” doesn’t outweigh the fact that you spent about 90% of your words talking about the tiny minority.

    In your incessant rants how dangerous it is to cross a street and every time you do so you take your life in your hands, you have never once mentioned that 99.9999999% of the street crossings are completed without any incident. And you have the nerve to say that I use scare tactics?

    I don’t recognize myself in your description. Would you care to link to one of my rants about how dangerous it is to cross a street and every time you do so you take your life in your hands?

    If there were evidence, you would just dismiss it because it only happens “a minority” of the time so it doesn’t matter.

    I wouldn’t, actually. The SBS machines always need to be readily accessible to passengers. If you think I don’t care about bus passengers, you must be confusing me with you.

    I have never stated explicitly or implicitly that drivers come first. Just count all the articles I have written demanding better bus service and the improvements for drivers, and you will see that the bus improvement articles greatly outnumber any improvements I have requested for drivers.

    You’ve repeatedly demanded that possible negative effects on motorists outweigh all other considerations when improvements for other road users are being planned. That’s implicitly stating that drivers come first.

    There is absolutely nothing wrong with that comment.

    You heard it here first, folks. But you probably already knew it.

    I was simply pointing out the absurdity of only considering a bus rider’s time and ignoring everyone else’s. I was trying to say if you think no one else’s time is worth anything, you could make an argument if you wanted to that someone’s time with a higher income is worth more than someone’s time who has a lower income, although I wasn’t going to go that far.

    “If you think no one else’s time is worth anything” is another strawman in your gallery o’ favorites. I’ve never claimed or implied that; I am willing to be on record (for whoever might happen to be paying attention) that motorists’ time is not, in fact, more valuable than anyone else’s, their convenience does not outweigh everyone else’s, and it’s time we moved closer to a balanced transportation system that enables reasonable mobility for all modes.

    Also, as Andrew has pointed out several times before (and I hope I’m not misquoting him too terribly), you can have a good city for pedestrians or a good city for motorists. You cannot have both; the demands of the two modes and the simple rules of physical space make it impossible.

    First, you sound as if the traffic never stops. If that was the case, one could never cross the street and that isn’t the case.

    It takes a lot longer to measure the width of the street than it does to cross it.

    Second, you could measure the width of the street using the pictures in the DOT reports counting the horizontal bars at the intersections and doing some multiplication. Each horizonal stripe is one foot wide and there are two feet between horizontal stripes.

    If I had known that, I could have done that.

    So by simply counting the number of horizontal stripes and multiplying by three, you have the street width.

    That assumes no fencepost errors, which could add enough to the street width to completely refute your point.

    Add in the islands and center divider, and you get would be another 15 feet or a total of 126 feet .

    Where did you get 15 feet from? That sounds insufficient for the widths of a center divider and two islands.

  27. https://support.google.com/maps/answer/1628031?hl=en

    Curb to curb it’s ~155 feet at 86th drive. Maybe 175 at Jamaica and Atlantic? But at 101st it’s 125 feet. Putting together a sloppy report is the crime of the century, yes? You keep harping on that number, 160 feet as if it the roadway being narrower materially changes the situation. Why do you attack others for ignoring the big picture and focusing on minutiae and then do so yourself?

    http://bklyner.com/2015/03/commute-need-moratorium-future-sbs-routes-part-4-5/#comment-1905176993

  28. “Favoring motorists is not exhibiting any bias. Not favoring motorists is being biased.”

    I CANNOT EVEN WITH THIS.

    Read what I wrote please, instead of making up non-sensical quotes that you are attributing to me.

    This is what I said “Being against cars traveling even more slowly so that is takes forever to get somewhere by car is not exhibiting any bias. Not caring about it, is being biased.” THAT DOES NOT MEAN “Favoring motorists is not exhibiting any bias. Not favoring motorists is being biased” WHICH IS A QUOTE YOU MADE UP!

    Thinking that bus riders’ trips should be as fast as motorists’ is bias? What exactly is the bias there?

    Do I really need to answer such a dumb question? A bus rider’s trip can never be as fast as a motorist’s under existing conditions because (1) the bus stops to pick up and discharge passengers and a car does not; (2) Someone must also wait for the bus to arrive according to a schedule which most likely is not adhered to (3) a car can use a highway which most local buses do not.

    So in order for both trips to take the same amount of time you would have to not only speed up bus trips significantly, you would also have to double auto driving times. I assume you intend to do this by taking every four lane roadway and turning two of those lanes into bus lanes. And if there doesn’t happen to be a bus operating on a four lane street, then two of those lanes would become bicycle lanes which would inconvenience 100 times as many as they would help. And the sad part is that you actually think this would make sense. BUT YOU SEE NO BIAS ON YOUR PART TOWARD AUTOMOBILE DRIVERS and you have the nerve to call me biased.

    The reason you are not a transportation planner is that it takes a little more analysis than simple arithmetic to automatically conclude a bus lane is necessary for Woodhaven/CrossBay. The two-thirds / one third applies to auto passengers vs. bus passengers, not to road space taken up by an auto passengers vs a bus passengers.

    Forty people in a bus do not take up the same amount of space as forty people traveling by car. The people in a bus take up much less room so they therefore require much less space, not nearly one-third of the roadway as you mistakenly claim. It’s the number of minutes that would be saved or loss that should determine if a bus lane is necessary, and that you fail to understand or even want to understand because your mind is so shut tight..

  29. This is what I said “Being against cars traveling even more slowly so that is takes forever to get somewhere by car is not exhibiting any bias. Not caring about it, is being biased.” THAT DOES NOT MEAN “Favoring motorists is not exhibiting any bias. Not favoring motorists is being biased” WHICH IS A QUOTE YOU MADE UP!

    “Being against cars traveling even more slowly so that is [sic] takes forever to get somewhere by car” translates as “being against anything that would ever, ever, ever slow down automobile traffic.” That’s certainly “favoring motorists.”

    “Not caring about slowing down motorists” translates (in my case, anyway) as “believing that no mode should be favored over any other,” which includes “not favoring motorists.”

    Do I really need to answer such a dumb question? A bus rider’s trip can never be as fast as a motorist’s under existing conditions because (1) the bus stops to pick up and discharge passengers and a car does not; (2) Someone must also wait for the bus to arrive according to a schedule which most likely is not adhered to (3) a car can use a highway which most local buses do not.

    The disadvantages bus travel suffers in comparison to private automobile travel are a direct consequence of the decision to explicitly favor private automobiles in the design and construction of road infrastructure. The conditions you describe are mostly not immutable laws of nature; the exception I would name is the fact that the bus makes stops, but that doesn’t have to be a severe disadvantage against car travel if bus travel is otherwise rapid.

    The reason you are not a transportation planner is that it takes a little more analysis than simple arithmetic to automatically conclude a bus lane is necessary for Woodhaven/CrossBay.

    The reason I’m not a transportation planner is that I’ve never studied to be one. I’m well aware of the type of analysis required to determine where bus lanes are needed, even if I would not be able to do that analysis myself, and I note in passing that transportation planners whose ideas aren’t stuck in 1968 have analyzed the situation on Woodhaven and Cross Bay and found that bus lanes are warranted there. You’ll have to forgive me if I trust them more than I trust you.

    The two-thirds / one third applies to auto passengers vs. bus passengers, not to road space taken up by an auto passengers vs a bus passengers.

    Forty people in a bus do not take up the same amount of space as forty people traveling by car. The people in a bus take up much less room so they therefore require much less space, not nearly one-third of the roadway as you mistakenly claim.

    Everybody is a priori entitled to an equal share of the road space. Though I’ve asked several times, you have yet to explain why, morally, people in cars have a right to take up at least an order of magnitude more space than other road users.

    The fact that cars take up so damned much space is a disadvantage of the private automobile as a mode, and the people who choose to use that mode should suffer the consequences of that disadvantage, not people who use other modes.

    It’s the number of minutes that would be saved or loss that should determine if a bus lane is necessary, and that you fail to understand or even want to understand because your mind is so shut tight..

    To an extent I’m inclined to agree with you here, but again, you’ll have to forgive me if I’m just not convinced that pulling random numbers out of your ass is the way to determine how many minutes would be saved or lost for each mode.

  30. 86th Drive is Woodhaven at it’s widest point except for perhaps for Jamaica and Atlantic. It is certainly not typical of the entire section of the roadway with service roads. It is considerably narrower between 88 Rd and Rockaway Blvd. The small section with service roads just south of Union Turnpike is even narrower than 125 feet wide. A general statement was made that where there are service roads Woodhaven is 160 feet wide and that isn’t even close to being true. You don’t take the width of the street for about four blocks and state that is a typical width for the entire roadway with service roads.

    Woodhaven narrows down to 70 and 75 feet at two points. Yet that is never mentioned. Cross Bay is narrower than Woodhaven and an exclusive bus lane there would leave only two lanes for general traffic. But not once does DOT ever mention that they will only leave two lanes for general traffic on Cross Bay. How do we know the affect on Cross Bay traffic with two lanes without seeing any numbers? They have carefully promised to maintain three lanes of general traffic for Woodhaven, but have given no such assurances for Cross Bay.

    So we are not talking about minutia or a sloppy report. We are talking about deliberate attempts to mislead, or a serious error which leads to a question of trust. If we cannot trust DOT to proofread their work for accuracy, how can we trust their other conclusions especially when they refuse to share any statistics with us? If they are deliberately attempting to mislead, then we really cannot trust anything they are saying without questioning them, can we? That is all I am doing. I certainly am not focusing on minutia. The “160 feet” is indicative of a far more serious problem.

  31. A general statement was made that where there are service roads Woodhaven is 160 feet wide

    Um…where was that general statement made? I think you’re the only one who read that the whole roadway was 160 feet. You’re also the only one thinks it makes a difference if it’s 125 feet or 160 feet. Both are too wide.

    You don’t take the width of the street for about four blocks and state
    that is a typical width for the entire roadway with service roads.

    Yea, where did that happen?

    Woodhaven narrows down to 70 and 75 feet at two points.

    The ROW never gets that narrow. The built overpass does, but there is plenty of room within the ROW to expand it if DOT has funds. You’ve asked for it to be expanded to add general purpose lanes in the past. DOT has said they’ll maintain three general purpose lanes and a bus lane.

    http://imgur.com/QCPZP2u

    It doesn’t say on Woodhaven only, I don’t know where you got that from. They’ve used “Woodhaven Boulevard” and “Woodhaven/Cross Bay Boulevards” interchangeably by the way. Cross bay is ~110 feet in Howard Beach. Three general traffic lanes and a parking lane in each direction, plus a median/turning lane. Plenty of room for three traffic lanes and a bus lane in each direction. Southbound the Addabbo only has two lanes anyway. South of the bridge it’s only two lanes in each direction. If you are worried DOT is going to sneakily leave only two lanes on cross bay, well, that’s what you have now!

    http://imgur.com/T5gJ0mf

    Spring-Fall 2015 you can expect your traffic analysis. They aren’t building anything for a while still. Calm down.

    I certainly am not focusing on minutia.

    Yea. You are.

  32. It’s the number of minutes that would be saved or loss that should determine if a bus lane is necessary, and that you fail to understand or even want to understand because your mind is so shut tight..

    To an extent I’m inclined to agree with you here, but again, you’ll have to forgive me if I’m just not convinced that pulling random numbers out of your ass is the way to determine how many minutes would be saved or lost for each mode.

    Raising the minimum mobility standards available to all doesn’t have to be a net time saver to be a good idea. Leaving drivers with trips that take 22 minutes instead of 20 to shorten bus trips from 40 to 38 is a win and reduces mobility inequality between car owners and those who are unable to or uninterested in owning cars, even if there are somewhat more drivers than transit riders.

  33. Um…where was that general statement made? I think you’re the only one who read that the whole roadway was 160 feet. You’re also the only one thinks it makes a difference if it’s 125 feet or 160 feet. Both are too wide

    Go to Pages 12 and 13 of the January 13, report. There are two maps that show existing conditions, one where the roadway does not have service roads and one where it does. Both have captions that say the
    roadway is wide implying it is too wide. The implication is that the roadway is 130 feet wide where there are no service roads, and 160 feet wide where there are service roads. Even if we are to believe that it is 160 feet wide only where the picture was taken, that would still not be true. Exaggerating a roadway’s width for the purpose of making it appear 35 feet wider than it really is, not minutia. It is deception.

    125 feet wide is certainly not too wide to handle the existing traffic. In fact it is too narrow to permit left turn lanes which is why virtually all left turns are banned between Park Lane Drive South and Rockaway Blvd. If left turns were allowed, traffic would back up too much even with three general purpose lanes.

    The ROW never gets that narrow. (70 to 75 feet.) The built overpass does, but there is plenty of room within the ROW to expand it if DOT has funds.

    I was also speaking of the ROW under the LIRR just south of the LIE where it is 75 feet wide. The funds to widen the roadway might not be available for 10 years or longer.

    Cross bay is ~110 feet in Howard Beach.

    However, between the Belt Parkway and Liberty Avenue it is only 100 feet wide which means that in order to maintain three general traffic lanes each way and a bus lane. parking would have to be banned on both sides of the street for that entire length. I seriously doubt it if the community would allow that to happen. That means either no bus lane or only two lanes each way for general traffic.

  34. Raising the minimum mobility standards available to all doesn’t have to be a net time saver to be a good idea. Leaving drivers with trips that take 22 minutes instead of 20 to shorten bus trips from 40 to 38 is a win and reduces mobility inequality between car owners and those who are unable to or uninterested in owning cars, even if there are somewhat more drivers than transit riders.

    I would tend to agree with you if we were talking about trading 2 minutes for 2 minutes, but that is not the case. We talking of drivers losing 10 minutes in exchange for bus riders gaining five minutes. When you consider that there are more drivers than bus riders, that would not be a good idea. And that would be for rush hours for those making trips of about five miles. During non-rush hours the only time saved by bus riders would be from fare pre-payment, not from the exclusive lanes.

  35. We talking of drivers losing 10 minutes in exchange for bus riders gaining five minutes.

    Those are your made-up numbers.

    And that would be for rush hours for those making trips of about five miles. During non-rush hours the only time saved by bus riders would be from fare pre-payment, not from the exclusive lanes.

    That’s your made-up “analysis.”

  36. According to Barre Flynn who uses Nostrand / Rogers twice a week, it sounds like those drivers are losing at least 10 minutes since he claims the driving lanes are a parking lot and the bus lanes are empty. Is he also making up an analaysis just because it is something you don’t want to hear?

    As bad as it is for drivers on Nostrand/Rogers, it will be worse for Woodaven drivers since those drivers have no nearby alternatives.

  37. Any transportation planner knows that anecdotal tales are no substitute for proper traffic analysis. So why are you substituting anecdotal tales for proper traffic analysis?

  38. “Being against cars traveling even more slowly so that is [sic] takes forever to get somewhere by car” translates as “being against anything that would ever, ever, ever slow down automobile traffic.” That’s certainly “favoring motorists.”

    “Not caring about slowing down motorists” translates (in my case, anyway) as “believing that no mode should be favored over any other,” which includes “not favoring motorists.”

    The disadvantages bus travel suffers in comparison to private automobile travel are a direct consequence of the decision to explicitly favor private automobiles in the design and construction of road infrastructure.

    That sounds like you are advocating a bus lane wherever a bus operates. I don’t know how else to interpret that statement.

    …the fact that the bus makes stops, but that doesn’t have to be a severe disadvantage against car travel if bus travel is otherwise rapid.

    Woodhaven’s average speed during rush hour is about 20 mph (which varies day to day). Taking away a line would cut that speed to between 10 and 15 mph. Twenty mph is slow enough for a major arterial, but you wouldn’t care is it is cut to 10 or 15 mph to benefit bus riders. Not only does that show no concern to motorists (it certainly does not favor them), it definitely favors bus riders even if the total amount saved by bus riders is less than the total amount of time lost by motorists. And you say “(in my case, anyway) as ‘believing that no mode should be favored over any other…’ ”

    The amount of time buses would save with their own lane would in no way be greater than the amount of time cars would lose and would not make up for the numbers of stops they would have to make. Add to that the walks to and from the bus, the wait for the bus, and additional time transferring, and there is no way buses could compete with autos regarding similar travel times. Average bus speeds would have to double and car speeds cut in half for trip times to be comparable, that is average car speeds would have to be cut from 20 to 10 mph and buses speeds would have to double from 20 to 40 mph, for trip times to be comparable.

    You say those numbers are made up? Then show me some DOT or MTA numbers that say something different.

    I’m well aware of the type of analysis required to determine where bus lanes are needed,

    From your statement that roads were designed to explicitly favor automobiles sounds like you favor bus / bicycle lanes on all streets with more than one lane in each direction. There is much more to the analysis than that, or looking at Google maps and determining any wide street should have a bus lane. That is about all the analysis that DOT did to determine bus lanes are needed there. Feel free to trust them more than me.

    The fact that cars take up so damned much space is a disadvantage of the private automobile as a mode, and the people who choose to use that mode should suffer the consequences of that disadvantage, not people who use other modes.

    Translation: I don’t give a damn about anyone who drives a car because I don’t drive one. So let their trips be at least as slow as mine. Let it be their problem because they deserve it since they have the nerve to drive . AND YOU CLAIM YOU AREN”T BIASED AND I AM, WHEN ALL I AM ADVOCATING IS FAIRNESS.

    The private automobile does have a disadvantage on a crowded roadway because they take up more roadway space than buses, per capita and we should try to increase bus usage. However, people drive for a reason and the major reason is that the same trip by mass transit would take considerably longer and involve multiple transfers.

    As I stated in the series, the few minutes, even if it is as much as 10 or 15 minutes during rush hours still will not bring the travel time down enough for it to be faster than by auto and SBS WILL DO NOTHING TO REDUCE THE NUMBERS OF TRANSFERS REQUIRED. You don’t make buses more competitive by seeking to double auto trip times. You do an intelligent analysis to determine where bus lanes would have the most benefit and the minimal negative impacts toward other users. You don’t just compare the numbers of bus riders to auto drivers as you have done. And if you are DOT and the MTA, you prove your case with showing the results of your models. You don’t just say, we did the analysis so trust us. Maybe you want to trust them, but I won’t trust someone who can’t even accurately measure the width of a roadway and only shares the positive aspects of a proposal without mentioning the negatives, leaving those for you to figure out.

  39. Because we haven’t yet seen any traffic analyses from DOT yet, although we are way past the initial first year assessment period which ended on Nov 17, 2014.

  40. 125 feet is too wide for an at grade urban street.

    I checked a few spots and still got 110 feet wide between the
    belt and liberty. Car lanes don’t need to be twelve feet wide. Narrow them to ten if you need more street space. There’s room for ten lanes a median refuge. If you have buses in the middle and want eight lanes (three car, one bus each direction) and a wider refuge you can ban parking during rush hour if you need three travel lanes. It might be a better configuration anyway, a defacto road diet outside of rush to cut down on rampant speeding you get when people drive on a road with three lanes and not nearly enough traffic to fill them – the situation at midday.

  41. You do an intelligent analysis to determine where bus lanes would have
    the most benefit and the minimal negative impacts toward other users.

    Is there anywhere in the city you would support repurposing existing general traffic lanes as exclusive bus lanes?

  42. I did not have a problem with Nostrand/Rogers if parallel streets would have been evaluated to determine if parking should be banned during certain hours to handle the displaced traffic but that was not done. Also te blocking of either the bus lane or general purpose traffic lane is not being enforced leading to traffic delays. So I oppose these lanes for those reasons. They would be a net benefit if they were properly enforced and parking was banned during the morning rush hour between Empire and Eastern Parkway on NY Avenue or maybe other streets as well. Southbound it may be necessary to ban parking on parallel streets during the PM rush hour north of Eastern Parkway. But nothing past Nostrand Rogers was probably even studied, so the bus lanes have caused considerable delay.

  43. Any transportation planner knows that anecdotal tales are no substitute for proper traffic analysis. So why are you substituting anecdotal tales for proper traffic analysis?

    Because … oh, never mind, I’ll stop right there.

  44. Woodhaven’s average speed during rush hour is about 20 mph (which varies day to day). Taking away a line would cut that speed to between 10 and 15 mph.

    Prove it.

  45. That’s correct, Allan, the city’s highest priority is no longer to enable drivers to drive as fast as they want.

  46. So your basic complaint is that drivers are now expected, once in a while, to stop for red lights, to avoid speeding by more than 10 mph, and to stay out of bus lanes?

    How terrible!

    You want to get away from New York? Good riddance. You might prefer Atlanta.

  47. According to Barre Flynn who uses Nostrand / Rogers twice a week

    And who appears to be quite upset that the city has decided to finally enforce driving laws at a small number of locations across the city, so you’ll have to pardon me if I don’t take his rant entirely seriously.

    it sounds like those drivers are losing at least 10 minutes since he claims the driving lanes are a parking lot and the bus lanes are empty.

    Plenty of drivers whine incessantly if they’re asked to give up as much as 10 seconds. Why do you assume his rant is about 10 minutes? Do you think he wouldn’t have written the exact same rant if he were only delayed 9 minutes, or 8, or 5, or 1, or less?

    By the way – if the bus lanes are allowing buses full of bus riders to pass cars (with an average of 1-2 occupants each, presumably), they’re doing exactly what they’re intended to do.

  48. Translation: I don’t give a damn about anyone who drives a car because I don’t drive one. So let their trips be at least as slow as mine. Let it be their problem because they deserve it since they have the nerve to drive .

    Whereas your view is: I don’t give a damn about anyone who doesn’t drive a car because I drive one. So let their trips take several times as long as mine. Let it be their problem because they deserve it, since they don’t have sense enough to get a car.

    Motorists do not have a *right* to get where they’re going faster than anyone else.

  49. So you admit that is your view. But your translation of my view is not accurate which I have explained numerous times. The idea of bus travel being as fast as auto travel is just not realistic which I have also explained.

  50. That was never a priority. Only now it is to keep slowing auto travel where an average speed of 10 or 15 mph on a major arterial is considered proper. However, when a bus travels at 10 mph, it is considered a bad thing.

  51. Please don’t misinterpret what I want to say. I am quite capable of stating my opinions without your help.

  52. With proper infrastructure, bus travel can be as fast as auto travel, or nearly so.

    You’re just stuck in an outmoded mindset.

  53. That (enabling drivers to drive as fast as they want) was always a priority, and the fact that you can’t recognize it is amazing to me.

  54. The trip from the Belt Parkway to Queens Blvd, a distance of about six miles takes about 20 minutes during rush hours. That’s about 20 mph. During non rush hours it takes about 15 minutes. On a bad day, it could take 30 minutes during rush hours which would be an average speed of 12 mph. Take away a lane and that would be reduced to under 10 mph, perhaps 8 mph.

  55. Of course you won’t take anyone seriously who doesn’t hold the same views as you do. That’s par for you.

  56. Kindly identify such a major arterial, where auto travel currently operates at an average of 10 or 15 mph but operated considerably faster prior to whatever policy or configuration change you are objecting to.

  57. I was simply reiterating what Barre Flynn (not you) wrote. He objected to having to worry about enforcement of red lights, of speed limits, and of bus lanes.

    He then threatened to “get away from this crappy city.” I, for one, won’t miss him or his sort one iota. I even directed his attention to a city that he might find more to his liking: Atlanta.

  58. I asked you to prove it, not to restate it. (Except, in your restatement, “between 10 and 15 mph” somehow dropped to “under 10 mph, perhaps 8 mph.”)

  59. On the contrary, I take his views quite seriously. He’s upset that the city is, for a change, enforcing driving laws – laws against running red lights, laws against speeding, laws against driving in bus lanes.

    Whether the bus lanes cost him, as a driver, 10 minutes or 9 minutes or 8 minutes or 5 minutes or 1 minute or no time at all is not his concern. He’s upset that he can’t do whatever he want when he’s behind the wheel of a car.

    The notion that “those drivers are losing at least 10 minutes” is your notion and yours alone. You made it up. You pulled it out of a hat, or maybe out of someplace else.

  60. I did not have a problem with Nostrand/Rogers if parallel streets would have been evaluated to determine if parking should be banned during certain hours to handle the displaced traffic but that was not done.

    Why do you assume there’s displaced traffic?

    http://www.nyc.gov/html/brt/downloads/pdf/20101027_nostrand_cac_slides.pdf – The summary of traffic impacts begins on page 12. It shows slight declines at some intersections and slight improvements at others, but nothing huge anywhere. So what gives you the idea that there’s any significant traffic diversion away from Nostrand/Rogers?

    But nothing past Nostrand Rogers was probably even studied, so the bus lanes have caused considerable delay .

    Not bad – you jumped to (at least) two conclusions within the space of one sentence. I’m impressed.

  61. So the tiny minority does not matter? Then why do you make such a big deal about how difficult it is for a pedestrian to cross the street safely. Wouldn’t you say that less than .00000001% of the pedestrian crossings result in injury or death? Why is that “tiny minority” so important but the “tiny minority” of those who are innocent and pay or are found guilty not important?

    Um. Because death or severe injury is a far more grave outcome than a traffic fine, one which is often irreversible? While a traffic fine is a few hundred dollars at most, and you can probably get it reversed if it was issued in error?

    (I can’t believe I actually had to point that out.)

    I can assure you my “tiny minority” is much greater than your “tiny minority” .

    I’m not so sure. There were 183 pedestrian fatalities and 11,398 pedestrian injuries in 2013. That’s quite a lot. I’m not sure where you’d find a count of improper summonses, but I don’t know that it’s “much greater” than 11,581 per year.

    Besides, nobody said that a “tiny minority” doesn’t matter. The point is that a tiny minority of improper summonses is no reason to scrap the entire SBS program. You want to improve the ticketing process to reduce the number of false positives? I have no objection whatsoever.

  62. I would say that up to $1.50 an hour is enough already

    Enough meaning that it keeps enough curbside space available for motorists who arrive looking for parking, or enough meaning that you don’t feel like paying more?

    Anyway, double parking for 15 seconds to drop someone off or pick someone up isn’t that big of a deal on most streets. It is the trucks who sit double parked for up to three hours that is the real problem. They are not ticketed because the law allows them to stand there if they are loading or unloading expeditiously.

    Nobody’s worried about 15 seconds. What about selfishly double parking or blocking a bus stop for 15 minutes while waiting to pick someone up?

    Trucks need to unload somewhere. We should be setting aside curbside space for truck unloading, but then we wouldn’t have quite so much parking for private automobiles, and somebody might complain. So they double park. Unlike the guy being picked up in a car, the fruits couldn’t get to Brighton Beach Avenue on the bus.

  63. Nobody measured a 125 foot street as 160 feet. Did you not see the “changing road widths” note?

    You know what I think is quite a serious error? Looking at a map that clearly shows that a bus route passes through areas with 40-60% and 60-80% car ownership rates and concluding that car ownership rates along the route are over 80%.

  64. On Woodhaven Blvd the MAJORITY are drivers.

    And the MAJORITY of the space on Woodhaven Blvd (and on nearly every other street in the city) will continue to be available to those drivers. Nobody’s ignoring drivers.

  65. Do I real ly need to answer such a dumb question? A bus rider’s trip can never be as fast as a motorist’s under existing conditions because (1) the bus stops to pick up and discharge passengers and a car does not; (2) Someone must also wait for the bus to arrive according to a schedule which most likely is not adhered to (3) a car can use a highway which most local buses do not.

    You’re assuming that buses are unable to bypass traffic congestion that cars encounter (and cause). With a bus lane, buses can bypass traffic congestion.

    The most prominent example in the New York City area is probably the Lincoln Tunnel XBL. The vast majority of XBL bus riders own cars, but the XBL makes bus travel attractive enough that they leave their cars at home.

  66. We talking of drivers losing 10 minutes in exchange for bus riders gaining five minutes.

    Hasn’t been the case on any of the SBS lines until now. Won’t be the case on any future SBS lines either.

  67. I’m sorry, are you, as a trained planner, telling me that you think that the unavailability of data to the public is license to engage in wild, unfounded speculation? That is profoundly unprofessional.

  68. So if 156 feet is “too wide” for Woodhaven. then tell me why left turns are banned 24/t between Rockaway Parkway and Jamaica Avenue (except for the area beneath the underpass at Atlantic?) It is because traffic would be hopelessly congested if left turns were allowed. Not only is it not too wide, it needs to be ten feet wider to accommodate left turns.

    Also, no lanes on mult-ilane streets are marked at every 12 feet. Twelve feet is the standard for interstate highways. Even the unreconstructed sections of the Belt Parkway are only 11 feet wide. The only places where lanes on city streets are 12 feet wide is where they are not marked.

    In other words, you measured Cross Bay wrong. The lanes are 11 feet wide, not 12 and the width between Liberty and the Belt is 100 or perhaps 102 feet wide, not 110.

  69. I was getting the “tiny minorities” by comparing the number of safe crossings to the number of crossings where there is either a death or injury. Are you saying that percentage of improper summonses issued is less than the percentage of people crossing the street who get injured or killed? I can’t believe you could even think that? How many millions of safe crossings are there daily? Wouldn’t you say it is in the many millions? How many injuries and deaths are there daily? Using your number 11,581, that is an average of less than 32 per day. There are over 10 million residents and visitors in NYC. If each one makes only one street crossing per day, the percentage crossing with incident would be 0.00032%. So you are saying that the percentage of innocent people paying fines is smaller than 0.00032? Wow? We must have some fantastic justice system that I am unaware of.

    And enforcement was only one of about twenty problems I pointed out with SBS. My proposed moratorium was not based solely on problems with enforcement, so again, please stop misinterpreting what I am saying.

  70. Not only is it not too wide, it needs to be ten feet wider to accommodate left turns.

    Because, again, only motorists matter, and the needs of other road users can be ignored.

  71. Enough meaning that it keeps enough curbside space available for motorists who arrive looking for parking, or enough meaning that you don’t feel like paying more?

    Actually both. Although I don’t take my care into Manhattan where they charge $1.50 per hour, I often see ample parking spaces available. Also, in Brooklyn you will see blocks where they charge a dollar and virtually all the meters are unoccupied, because people can find free spaces with a little looking and causing congestion.

    Nobody’s worried about 15 seconds.

    If no one is worried about 15 seconds, why when the police need to fill a quota, they will block you in so you can’t leave and give you a summons for double parking when you either stopped to let someone off or see someone about to vacate a parking space and stop for 15 seconds so he can get out and you can get in?

    Trucks need to unload somewhere. We should be setting aside curbside space for truck unloading.

    I fully agree with you. On Brighton Beach Avenue there are only like two loading zones for trucks when there needs to be one every block on the north side where all the fruit stores are located. Yes, drivers would complain. But there also is unutilized space beneath the Brighton Line between Br 10th and Br 1th Street, that could be converted to municipal pay parking, yielding revenue for the city. But the city is against cars and is looking to sell off all its municipal lots for development, not create any new ones. The City is responsible for traffic congestion, not those who have little alternative than to drive.

  72. All they had to do is take a picture where the street is actually 160 feet wide and note that this is not a typical width. That the average width is 125 feet and it also narrows down to 70 and 75 feet. But that would be telling the truth, not lying.

    And you know what I think is a serious error? Someone who insists that the areas where a bus route passes through states that the car ownership rates varies between 40 and 80%, when it actually varies between 60 and 80% and is only at 40% for perhaps a single block out of hundreds of blocks. I admitted my error. Will you admit yours? (And we are talking about the map I cited, not the DOT figures you cited, so please don’t try to confuse.

  73. I am saying that DOT has a duty to provide data to the public, when spending hundreds of millions of dollars are at stake. not engage in unfounded WILD speculation like bus lanes will improve traffic flow. That is soundly unprofessional.

    My “speculation” is not wild but based on nine plus years of experience. DOT plans from looking at data from several intersections, admits to getting lost on Woodhaven because of inadequate signage, and is not aware of a former bypass route motorists were taking to save five minutes when traffic was severely delayed. So they repaint the street to make that bypass no longer possible, and lie about it saying, it prevented a merge, when there was no merge to begin with. So who would you say is lying and making the wild speculation and who is being logical and intelligent here? No don’t even bother answering, because no matter what I say won’t make any difference to you. We know where you stand. BIASED AGAINST ANYONE WHO MUST DRIVE.

  74. As DOT stated, each SBS route is different. If it hasn’t happened so far does not preclude it happening on Woodhaven. But you, someone who probably has never even driven on Woodhaven, has a crystal ball and knows it is impossible. What is the disclaimer from all investment counselors? Past performance is not indicative of future results? The same applies here.

  75. I did prove it using logic which obviously isn’t good enough for you. I did not merely restate it as you allege. In fact there is no “proof that would satisfy you.

  76. So you use data from First and Second Avenue to determine what is happening on Nostrand/Rogers. Very professionally sound. You can’t even wait for the report if it even ever is published. And you accuse me of wild speculation? We already have newspaper articles and testimony which you choose to ignore, how the traffic lanes are not being enforced and are slowing down traffic. So my speculation is not wild. But applying what happens in midtown to what is happening in Brooklyn and claiming the circumstances are the same is utterly ridiculous.

  77. So you use data from First and Second Avenue to determine what is happening on Nostrand/Rogers. Very professionally sound.

    What are you talking about? Andrew linked to an analysis of current conditions on Nostrand and Rogers with descriptions of expected traffic effects with SBS.

  78. You completely missed the point!!

    When I say it’s too wide, I mean it’s inappropriate to have an at grade road that wide in an urban area. It has absolutely nothing to do with how well used the road is.

    http://www.nyc.gov/html/dot/downloads/pdf/20100511_cross_bay_blvd.pdf

    A couple years ago the three lanes in Broad Channel were 12-11-11 feet wide.

    http://www.nyc.gov/html/brt/downloads/pdf/2014-woodhaven-comm-planning-workshop-presentation.pdf

    Looks like approaching Rockaway blvd the lanes are twelve feet wide.

    http://www.nyc.gov/html/dot/downloads/pdf/20100624_woodhaven_blvd_posters.pdf

    Some on Woodhaven are ten, some are eleven, some are twelve.

    http://www.nyc.gov/html/dot/downloads/pdf/8thave.pdf

    More twelve foot lanes!

    Plenty of twelve foot lanes on city streets. There shouldn’t be, but there are.

    Not sure where you get 100-102 from.

    http://www.nyc.gov/html/dot/downloads/pdf/woodhavenproject_sept09.pdf

    Has some traffic volume and travel time numbers if interested.

  79. The map you cited had three blocks adjacent to Woodhaven. Kew Gardens, Forest Hills, and Middle Village.

    If you want you can include the Ozone park block adjacent to Cross Bay – hard to tell where Woodhaven ends on that map, is part of it adjacent to Woodhaven too? You could also include the Rockaways block adjacent to Cross Bay (includes Broad Channel) where car ownership is also 40-60%. If you want to look at hundreds of blocks then you need a different map. So 1/3, 1/4, or 2/5 blocks have a household car ownership rate of 40-60%. Not one out of hundreds…

  80. I wasn’t including the Rockaways. One, two or three blocks it really doesn’t matter when you are discussing hundreds of blocks where the minimum car ownership is 60%. To say it varies from 40% to 80% when except those blocks it varies from 60% to 80% is just misleading ad inaccurate.

  81. What blocks are you talking about? I’m talking about the ones from your link. They weren’t small census tract blocks, they were large agglomerations of many census tract blocks. There weren’t hundreds of those. There were three to five, depending how you counted. 25-40% of those agglomerations of blocks had a car ownership rate 40-60% Where are you getting hundreds from ?!!?

  82. Here’s the same map, with the approximate route of the Q52/Q53 superimposed.

    Kew Gardens and Ozone Park are in the 60-80% range. Jackson Heights, Elmhurst, Forest Hills, and the Rockaways are in the 40-60% range.

  83. No don’t even bother answering, because no matter what I say won’t make any difference to you. We know where you stand. BIASED AGAINST ANYONE WHO MUST DRIVE.

    Very, very few of the people who drive must drive. The rest choose to do so.

  84. Car ownership rates are much higher in most of New Jersey than in the vicinity of the Q52/53, so there obviously won’t be as much diversion from car to bus. There will, just as obviously, be some. But improvements to bus service aren’t only made in order to induce mode shifts; they’re also made simply to improve service for existing transit riders. In this case, pedestrian safety is also a priority (much as you repeatedly deny it).

  85. You didn’t prove anything. You made a specific quantitative claim while your justification wasn’t quantitative on the slightest.

  86. It hasn’t happened so far because the traffic engineers have been more or less correct with their forecasts. I see no reason to assume that they’ll suddenly get this one way wrong.

  87. My “speculation” is not wild but based on nine plus years of experience.

    Just as one can’t determine how well a bus line works solely by riding it, one can’t determine the impact of a change to a street’s configuration solely by driving it.

    When it comes to traffic, you claim that personal experience is all that matters. But when it comes to bus service, you’re happy to write dozens of articles complaining about a service you’ve only used nine times.

    Neither is the correct approach. There’s a middle ground. Try it out some day; you might learn something.

  88. It certainly was quantitative. I told what the average speed is today using realistic travel times and extrapolated from there. You take away half the lanes, you double the travel time. Currently during rush hours, all four lanes are heavily used by through traffic. DOT’s plan calls for two through lanes and one local lane which will be separated from each other by the bus lane, unless they go with the center median option. That would mean four lanes would be now squeezed into two since only local traffic would use the local lane. Turning will also be severely limited, so you may have to go over a mile out of your way to make a turn. It is perfectly logical to assume that a 50% reduction in the roadway will result in a doubling of the travel time.

  89. If you are going to work which most are doing, you may not be able to just shift your commute time. Not driving implies shifting to other modes, but SBS does not make bus an alternative if the trip will still take much longer than driving which it would.

    Unless, the center alignment is chosen which would be more dangerous for pedestrians as they rush toward the center of the street to catch a bus, BRT actually cuts roadway capacity by 50% since there will be only two lanes for through traffic and one separated lane for local traffic. If the local lane is empty and the through lanes are crowded, there will be no way to shift to it, with the bus lane between them so you are stuck. With BRT 8 mph during rush hours is actually conservative. It may only be four. That could add thirty minutes at least to one’s trip. The choice will be to further congest the already congested Van Wyck. Guarantee you the Van Wyck will not be included in any traffic analysis DOT performs so the true traffic impacts will never be known.

  90. Everyone matters. Not only bus bus riders! How many times do I have to say that with you continuing to lie about what I said? I am still waiting for you to post a comment on my latest article where I discuss the plight of bus riders without mentioning motorists even once.

  91. Everyone matters. Not only bus bus riders! How many times do I have to say that with you continuing to lie about what I said?

    First you’d have to stop saying that only motorists matter.

    I know you think you’re being very careful to pay lip service to all sides, but lip service isn’t good enough. Your bias in favor of motorists is everywhere in your writing; it’s unfortunate that you can’t see it, but that’s not my fault.

    I’m going to break down this example for you:

    Not only is it not too wide, it needs to be ten feet wider to accommodate left turns.

    “Accommodate left turns” is something that only helps motorists.

    Widening the street — especially an already extremely wide one like Woodhaven — makes things worse for pedestrians, particularly, because the wider a street is, the longer it takes to cross and the more difficult it is to cross safely. This applies particularly to the elderly for whom you exhibit such tender care when you’re complaining about SBS making them walk farther to reach bus stops. Why is it okay for them to have much more difficulty crossing the street? Oh, right, because helping motorists is more important than being concerned about the elderly, but being concerned about the elderly serves well as an excuse to complain about bus service.

    Do you really not see that this is how your writing looks?

  92. Throwing numbers around randomly and being quantitative are two different things, as transportation planners know. Extrapolation is an extremely dangerous method; I’m not particularly quantitative and even I know that. Especially when the extrapolation is based on a series of, let us be kind, questionable assumptions.

  93. You take away half the lanes, you double the travel time.

    Where’d you come up with this gem?

    (Hint: Traffic engineering doesn’t work that way. You’re making this up.)

  94. First you’d have to stop saying that only motorists matter.

    WHEN ARE YOU GOING TO STOP WITH THE LIES? If you keep this up, I will just ignore all your posts altogether.

    When I said the street is not wide enough, I did not advocate widening it did I? That is something you read into my comment. The sidewalks on Woodhaven are miniscule but the pedestiran traffic is also very light, so that is okay. So it is not even possible to widen Woodhaven without tearing down buildings. So for you to even think I would propose to widen Woodhaven is ludicrous.

    What I am saying is that ideally there should be left turn lanes every block, but that would only be possible by removing a traffic lane. The lesser of the two evils is to have three lanes in both directions with no left turns as it exists today.

    You say “Accommodating left turns only helps motorists.” Of course in your eyes that would be a crime “to help motorists”. We must make things as difficult as possible for motorists and only help cyclists, pedestrians and bus riders.

    Do you really not see that this is how your writing looks?

  95. When I said the street is not wide enough, I did not advocate widening it did I? That is something you read into my comment.

    I’m speaking to the entire tenor of your writing. It’s difficult for me to believe that you really don’t know how you come across (as a defender of motorists and everyone else be damned), but if that’s what you want to tell us, then I’ll accept that your lack of self-insight is that extreme.

  96. I have already proved to you that is not the case by comparing the number of articles where my sole concern is the bus rider and where I am looking out for motorists. The score is 3 to 1 for bus riders.

    Yet you ignore any article I write about the plight of bus riders like this weeks article about bus service mismanagement and comment endlessly when I ask for fair treatment of motorists. I am starting to get the impression that you either don’t have a full time job or are using your work time to comment on this forum.

    And you are just too blind to see how biased you are against motorists like pretending the ability to make a left turn is a luxury that should not be afforded to motorists.

  97. I have already proved to you that is not the case by comparing the number of articles where my sole concern is the bus rider and where I am looking out for motorists. The score is 3 to 1 for bus riders.

    It’s cute how you think that constitutes proof. Too many of your bus-related articles point out improvements that can be made to help bus riders — as long as motorists are not inconvenienced in the slightest, because that must never, ever, ever happen.

    Yet you ignore any article I write about the plight of bus riders like this weeks article about bus service mismanagement and comment endlessly when I ask for fair treatment of motorists.

    In my eyes, your anti-MTA ranting, while annoying, is less damaging than your incessant pro-motorist bullshit, so I consider it more essential to counter the latter. It’s unfortunate that you don’t like my priorities, but I feel disinclined to change them on that basis.

    And you are just too blind to see how biased you are against motorists like pretending the ability to make a left turn is a luxury that should not be afforded to motorists.

    What? Are you talking about the fact that I objected to your non-proposal to widen Woodhaven for left turns because it’s already fucking wide enough?

  98. You are sounding like a broken record:

    Too many of your bus-related articles point out improvements that can be made to help bus riders — as long as motorists are not inconvenienced in the slightest, because that must never, ever, ever happen.

    LIE!!! Most of my bus related articles that are not about SBS which is the vast majority, never mention motorists.

    the fact that I objected to your non-proposal to widen Woodhaven for left turns because it’s already fucking wide enough?

    And what exactly is a non-proposal??? That’s right I never made that proposal. So you have no point at all to make.

    And I also make pro-MTA statements. But you only see what you want to see because your wear blinders where you can only see pedestrians, cyclists and bus riders. No one else needs to exist according to you. Why don’t you just exercise your God-given right to cross the street wherever and whenever you want to. And please don’t bother to take off your headphones.

  99. Not always, but when a road is already over capacity in rush hours like Woodhaven is, it certainly would be the case. And you know how traffic engineering works because you’re an…..?

  100. That’s not how traffic engineering works. And I’m a…?

    Can you explain why you count the local lane as a lane for existing conditions but not in the SBS scenario?

  101. I sound like a broken record?!?!?

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

    Oh God, I can’t breathe….

    LIE!!! Most of my bus related articles that are not about SBS which is the vast majority, never mention motorists.

    Maybe it looks this way to me because I’ve mostly been following your columns for the last couple of years, but certainly during that time period, “the vast majority” of your bus articles have not been about bus topics other than SBS. It might be a simple majority (although I would doubt even that), but it certainly is not “the vast majority.”

    And what exactly is a non-proposal??? That’s right I never made that proposal. So you have no point at all to make.

    Of course I do. You mentioned, as if in passing, that Woodhaven needed to be wider, while trying to preserve deniability by being able to say it wasn’t an actual proposal. But regardless of what you meant by it, it reveals your actual priorities.

    And I also make pro-MTA statements. But you only see what you want to see because your wear blinders where you can only see pedestrians, cyclists and bus riders. No one else needs to exist according to you.

    Somebody needs to see pedestrians, cyclists, and bus riders. You certainly don’t.

    Why don’t you just exercise your God-given right to cross the street wherever and whenever you want to. And please don’t bother to take off your headphones.

    I do, and I don’t, but I do it in such a way that I stay alive. Sorry to disappoint you.

  102. Because on days traffic is very heavy during the morning rush, which when I used the roadway daily occurred about once a week, some through drivers would choose the local lane on the service road where the buses are, because it actually was up to five minutes faster than the main roadway. Many cars also would illegally turn at the corners when traffic permitted and it wasn’t dangerous to switch to the local lanes. If there are no slip lanes, and none were shown on the block by block design shown last Thursday, it would no longer be possible to use the service roads for through traffic unless you make your decision at Rockaway Blvd going north and just south of Park Lane Drive going south.

    Now let me tell you how traffic engineering works. Apparently it is done from an ivory tower using limited data without any real world experience. Just yesterday on a Saturday afternoon, the line to make a left turn at Metropolitan extended way past the left turn lane and one third of the way up the overpass. I estimated 100 cars in that queue. Southbound the line extended well past Cooper Avenue. DOT plans to funnel all those cars westbound onto Cooper. Please explain how that could possibly work out. That shopping center is extremely busy on weekends, and apparently DOT is only considering rush hour traffic assuming the weekend traffic is less, and maybe using severely outdated weekend counts. They need to see te conditions today. But as we all know traffic engineers know everything. Those who actually use the roadway know nothing.

  103. I don’t see slip lanes mentioned in the summary of the March 26th meeting. Additionally, the community was promised that three lanes for general traffic will be maintained throughout. The final plan shws bus lanes over and under the LIRR which means only two through lanes. Also, only two through lanes for the length of Cross Bay Blvd. On Saturday one lane of Cross Bay was closed for some utility work, and traffic was backed up for five blocks. What do you think will happen during the peak hours with only two lanes for general traffic?

  104. “If
    there are no slip lanes, and none were shown on the block by block
    design shown last Thursday, it would no longer be possible to use the
    service roads for through traffic unless you make your decision at
    Rockaway Blvd going north and just south of Park Lane Drive going south.”

    There are no slip lanes today.

    “Now let me tell you how traffic engineering works. Apparently it is done
    from an ivory tower using limited data without any real world
    experience.”

    That’s how traffic engineering used to work. That’s how Woodhaven Boulevard was turned from this – http://www.projectwoodhaven.com/2012/February/brooklyn-manor-15.jpg – to the monstrosity it is today in the 1930s. Say what you will about the public involvement process and whether it actually influences outcomes; if planning were really done in an “ivory tower” you wouldn’t be commenting on a block-by-block conceptual plan until the bulldozers showed up.

    “Just yesterday on a Saturday afternoon, the line to make a left turn at
    Metropolitan extended way past the left turn lane and one third of the
    way up the overpass. I estimated 100 cars in that queue.”

    A vehicle in a queue occupies about 25 feet. If there were 100 cars in that queue, it would have extended past 81st Road, almost to the Jackie Robinson overpass. If your estimation of length is better than your estimation of volume and it were truly one third of the way up the overpass, that would be about 46 cars. Still a long queue, but nowhere near 100. A southbound queue extending to Cooper Avenue is only about 18 cars.

    “That shopping center is extremely busy on weekends, and apparently DOT
    is only considering rush hour traffic assuming the weekend traffic is
    less, and maybe using severely outdated weekend counts. They need to see
    te conditions today.”

    I can’t tell you exactly what counts NYCDOT is using, but I’ve linked to publicly available NYSDOT counts from 2011 several times. Hourly traffic on Saturdays is about the same as weekdays in the afternoon/evening, and about half in the morning. Sundays are a bit lower than Saturdays.

    “Those who actually use the roadway know nothing”

    Those who use the roadways know the piece of the roadway they use at the time they use it, and tend to favor solutions that help them. It’s the engineer’s job to look at it from evereyone’s point of view and develop a solution that balances safety and efficiency for everyone. I’ll bet some engineers even use the roadway!

  105. “When I said the street is not wide enough, I did not advocate widening it did I?”

    “It needs to be ten feet wider” sure sounds like advocating to widen it.

    “What I am saying is that ideally there should be left turn lanes every
    block, but that would only be possible by removing a traffic lane.”

    Or narrowing the median. But that would also hurt motorists, because without enough space for a pedestrian refuge in the median, Woodhaven Boulevard would be have to be red for at least 41 seconds to allow pedestrians enough time to cross.

  106. I never proposed narrowing the median. You just did, so don’t propose a bad idea and then attribute it to me. Very clever. Also where there are service roads, the median is only three feet wide, so are you proposing to narrow it to one foot?

  107. I didn’t attribute it to you. It’s something I would look at as an option to prohibiting lefts (and is something DOT looked at – the original Congested Corridors concepts had a southbound dual left at Metropolitan Avenue). It’s not a bad idea; it just has tradeoffs.

  108. So please explain how DOT goes from a dual left turn lane (they must realize the high volume of left turns to even consider it) to no left turn at all. Last Saturday afternoon, the line to make a left turn there extended way past Cooper Avenue.

  109. I’m not DOT, but I’ll speculate that the extra phase added too much red time for the other movements and using Cooper as a “jughandle” ended up being more efficient.

  110. Maybe more efficient on paper but not with those weekend volumes. You can’t just assume the traffic volumes on weekends there are lower than during the peak. I can guarantee you that more cars want to turn there on a weekend afternoon with all those shoppers than during the peak. I never saw so many cars waiting to make these left turns in the 18 years I have been using Woodhaven as I did last Saturday.

  111. I mean efficient for the whole intersection, not just the left turn. Green for one movement means red for all the others.

    Was this the first time you were there on a Saturday in recent years?

  112. I am either usually every Saturday or Sunday afternoon and very occasionally during the week. Last time on a Saturday was about three weeks ago. There are usually about 30 cars waiting to make a left turn. This week it was about three times the usual amount. Perhaps Easter shopping?

  113. Or an accident downstream, or malfunctioning signal, or some other anomaly that you don’t consider in design.

    I’m not sure which direction you’re talking about, but southbound, 30 cars would extend past Yellowstone.

  114. Neither of your possible explanations make sense and I will explain why. Yes it extended way past Yellowstone which is equivalent to Cooper which I referenced.

    Since Woodhaven traffic was normal, we can rule out problems on Woodhaven as the cause. Since there were like a hundred cars waiting to make a left turn onto Metropolitan, there must have been a problem further down Metrpolitan in the direction of Forest Hills.

    But that doesn’t account for the other hundred cars northbound on Woodhaven wanting to turn left toward Middle Village. So if there was something extraordinary going on at Metropolitan, there would have to be two separate unrelated problems happening on Metropolitan at two different locations.

    A far more plausible explanation was an unusually high number of shoppers at the shopping center adjacent to Metropolitan and Woodhaven.

    Even if this was an unusual day, thirty turning cars per cycle both south and north is typical for a Saturday afternoon and has to be planned for. Cooper would not be able to handle all those cars being funneled into it with half those cars having to double back on Metropolitan probably doubling the volume on eastbound Metropolitan.

    When turning volume traffic reaches the the level of last Saturday again traffic would just come to a halt.

  115. I can guarantee you that more cars want to turn there on a weekend afternoon with all those shoppers than during the peak.

    Then make the left lane a turn lane on weekends only. Turn light stays red at least during peak hours, maybe midday during the week too.

  116. That could work depending on the amount of through Woodhaven traffic on weekends. You would be cutting the number of through lanes in half from four to two. I can’t imagine that not having a significant impact and not causing extreme traffic congestion.

  117. Personally, I’m inclined to take the word of a trained traffic engineer over your imagination (or lack thereof, in this case).

  118. A vehicle in a queue occupies about 25 feet. If there were 100 cars in that queue, it would have extended past 81st Road, almost to the Jackie Robinson overpass. If your estimation of length is better than your estimation of volume and it were truly one third of the way up the overpass, that would be about 46 cars. Still a long queue, but nowhere near 100. A southbound queue extending to Cooper Avenue is only about 18 cars.

    You’re just speaking from an ivory tower using limited data without any real world experience. There were 100 cars extending one third of the way up the overpass, and don’t you try to tell us otherwise.

  119. “Since Woodhaven traffic was normal, we can rule out problems on Woodhaven as the cause. Since there were like a hundred cars waiting to make a left turn onto Metropolitan, there must have been a problem further down Metrpolitan in the direction of Forest Hills.”

    Yes, I meant downstream on Metropolitan.

    “But that doesn’t account for the other hundred cars northbound on Woodhaven wanting to turn left toward Middle Village.”

    Didn’t we already establish that it was more likely less than half that?

    “So if there was something extraordinary going on at Metropolitan, there would have to be two separate unrelated problems happening on Metropolitan at two different locations. A far more plausible explanation was an unusually high number of shoppers at the shopping center adjacent to Metropolitan and Woodhaven.”

    Which doesn’t account for the like-a-hundred northbound lefts. Big funeral at St. John’s Cemetery?

    “Even if this was an unusual day, thirty turning cars per cycle both south and north is typical for a Saturday afternoon and has to be planned for. Cooper would not be able to handle all those cars being funneled into it with half those cars having to double back on Metropolitan probably doubling the volume on eastbound Metropolitan.”

    I’m more inclined to believe that a left turn from Cooper and a through movement on Metropolitan could handle the extra traffic more efficiently that a left turn from Woodhaven.

  120. Didn’t we already establish that it was more likely less than half that?

    Only in your ivory tower.

  121. Didn’t we already establish that it was more likely less than half that?

    We certainly did not.

    Which doesn’t account for the like-a-hundred northbound lefts. (referring to an unusually high number of shoppers at the shopping center adjacent to Metropolitan and Woodhaven). Big funeral at St. John’s Cemetery?

    I really doubt that a big funeral at St Johns would have that type of an impact. Even if that were true, there still would have had to be another simultaneous event on the eastbound part of Metropolitan going toward Forest Hills, which would have been extremely unlikely.

    Your comment also shows that you have never even been to that shopping center. Looking at Google Maps, which is likely all that the DOT engineers also did, you don’t see that half the traffic exits from Trotting Course Lane onto Metropolitan and the other half exits onto Woodhaven from 72nd Drive with many cars turning north. So the number of northbound left hand turns certainly are affected by that shopping center.

  122. Yes, only in RIPTA42s ivory tower. He has never been to that shopping center and thinks that Google Maps tells the entire story.

    Thanks for agreeing with me because we never established that left turns is more likely less than half that.

  123. Yes, only in RIPTA42s ivory tower. He has never been to that shopping center and thinks that Google Maps tells the entire story.

    Thanks for agreeing with me because we never established that left turns is more likely less than half that.

    I’m not sure how to say this nicely, but I wasn’t agreeing with you – I was mocking you.

    RIPTA42’s ivory tower analysis was a simple multiplication. There is no way for anywhere close to 100 cars to fit into the space that you claim was occupied by 100 cars.

    That you are either unable or unwilling to grasp a simple multiplication says a lot.

  124. “We certainly did not.”

    Then they were all Smart cars stacked bumper-to-bumper? Because that’s the only way a hundred vehicles would extend a third of the way up the bridge.

    “Your comment also shows that you have never even been to that shopping center. Looking at Google Maps, which is likely all that the DOT engineers also did, you don’t see that half the traffic exits from Trotting Course Lane onto Metropolitan and the other half exits onto Woodhaven from 72nd Drive with many cars turning north. So the number of northbound left hand turns certainly are affected by that shopping center.”

    72nd Drive is three quarters of a mile away; I think you mean 73rd Avenue. Traffic exiting the shopping center might affect that left, but that would back up along 73rd Avenue, not over the bridge. And you indicated that in your experience being there all the time, it was an anomaly.

  125. I’m not only using Google Maps; I also have your boots-on-the-ground observations from being there regularly on Saturdays to suggest that last Saturday was an anomaly. And I think I went to that Staples once.

  126. I didn’t indicate that it was an anomaly. I stated I never seen it that bad. One would have to check the conditions on several Saturdays to conclude if it was an anomaly or not. Anyway, we are talking about the same street. For some reason, my version of Google Maps has it labeled as 72nd Drive, although the sign says 73rd Avenue. The street name must have been changed in recent years.

    And it definitely would back up traffic over the overpass, if every time the signal changes all the queue space is taken up by turning vehicles so Woodhaven traffic could not move forward when the signal turns green for them or there is only space for one car at each signal change.

    I happened to be there today (Wednesday) and took three videos one after the other between 2 and 2:30 PM, which is definitely the off-peak. All videos show traffic moving very smoothly and buses moving just as fast as all other traffic. I also see two very heavy left turn movements about to be banned which in some cases all the cars cannot make the left turn on the first cycle, and we know weekends are worse. Pedestrian traffic is also extremely light. I see no reason to mess with this intersection by adding any islands and disrupting traffic flow. I also cannot see any reason for an exclusive bus lane or how it will allow buses to travel any faster.

    https://onedrive.live.com/redir?resid=D99B44AF41EDC532!689&authkey=!ADKMq7DNCgZVzBU&ithint=video%2cMOV

    https://onedrive.live.com/redir?resid=D99B44AF41EDC532!688&authkey=!ALXEgpegdcs2chQ&ithint=video%2cMOV

    https://onedrive.live.com/redir?resid=D99B44AF41EDC532!687&authkey=!AIwV9asNBIVyEQc&ithint=video%2cMOV

  127. I recalculated my distances. One third of the way up the overpass would extend past 76 Avenue and would be 40 cars, not 100. Still a lot when you intend to ban the left turn entirely.

  128. It looks like it is nine. Check out the three videos I posted today up a ways..(Wednesday) taken between 2 and 2:30 PM. Traffic moves fine without the need for any bus lanes. It looks like one or two don’t make it through on the first cycle. That means 40 cars would take five cycles.

  129. NYC does a poor job of making use of cameras to vary cycle lengths. They have the network in midtown and are working on one in flushing. But non networked cameras varying cycle lengths are common outside of NYC. I think a lot of your worries about the effect of a bus lane on offpeak travel wouldn’t pan out if DOT makes use of better variable timing at intersections. When you have such a long backup having an extended turning phase and a shortened through phase would be helpful. Or splitting it into a northbound through and turning phase and a southbound through and turning phase. You have a minimum amount of time that you need for pedestrians to cross, but you can cut that with a bulbout on the northwest and southeast corners.

  130. “I didn’t indicate that it was an anomaly. I stated I never seen it that
    bad. One would have to check the conditions on several Saturdays to
    conclude if it was an anomaly or not”

    Didn’t you say you were there almost every Saturday or Sunday afternoon? And aren’t you basing all of your arguments on the fact that you’re a user of the corridor?

    “Anyway, we are talking about the same street. For some reason, my
    version of Google Maps has it labeled as 72nd Drive, although the sign
    says 73rd Avenue. The street name must have been changed in recent
    years.”

    Yes, I’m aware it’s the same street. I’ve always known it to be 73rd Avenue, and every city zoning map back to 1961 labels it 73rd Avenue. Who’s relying on Google Maps from an ivory tower? 🙂

    “And it definitely would back up traffic over the overpass, if every time
    the signal changes all the queue space is taken up by turning vehicles
    so Woodhaven traffic could not move forward when the signal turns green
    for them or there is only space for one car at each signal change.”

    True, depending on when in the Metropolitan Avenue cycle 73rd Avenue gets a green, but that amount of volume would also make a really obvious queue on 73rd Avenue. Is that what you saw?

    “I see no reason to mess with this intersection by adding any islands
    and disrupting traffic flow. I also cannot see any reason for an
    exclusive bus lane or how it will allow buses to travel any faster.”

    Wouldn’t one have to check the conditions on *several* Wednesday afternoons to know if that’s true?

  131. The entire idea for a bus lane is so buses can travel faster because there are too many cars. If that is not the case and the cars do not slow down the buses, there is no need to make any changes and create special lanes, which was my point from the beginning.

  132. I was responding to your frequent claim that one fewer lane off peak would produce terrible congestion. You throw it out whenever anyone suggests a woodhaven that has fully separated busways, or wider medians, or bike lanes, or wider sidewalks etc…

  133. Yes they do. But as I have been saying from the beginning, if speeding up a the buses a little during the rush hours causes more people to lose time than gain time, exclusive lanes would not be a good idea.

  134. Three lanes are definitely needed to maintain current speeds which are appropriate for a major arterial like Woodhaven. We do not need to slow speeds down to local street level. Don’t forget that two lanes are now proposed for the overpass, not three as DOT has stated at every meeting. That will cause huge backups for about a mile. So even during the off-peak speeds will vary from 10 or 15 mph to 25 mph, when they currently are 30 and 35 mph (with average speeds of about 25 when you consider traffic signals). The new average speed will be about 15 or 20 mph.

    That means that during the off-peak buses travel no faster but cars travel slower and trips are increased by 5 or 10 minutes. No one benefits. So why do it? As far as making the streets safer, that is also a myth because you need to look at safety on a per mile basis, not by how long a street is. Longer streets will naturally show up with more injuries and deaths than shorter streets. As you can also see, pedestrian traffic is extremely light, unlike Queens Blvd. We don’t need islands, at least not at this location.

  135. Actually, you’ve been insisting, with no evidence whatsoever, that more people would lose time than would gain time. No “ifs” about it.

    I’d point out, as well, that if [I’M MAKING THESE NUMBERS UP; THIS IS JUST A HYPOTHETICAL EXAMPLE] 30,000 people each gain 10 minutes while 60,000 people each lose two minutes, that is still a net gain. The fact that twice as many people lose time as gain time doesn’t matter when the amount of time lost vs. gained is so skewed.

  136. Three lanes are definitely needed to maintain current speeds which are appropriate for a major arterial like Woodhaven. We do not need to slow speeds down to local street level.

    Welcome to 1972, everyone!

    Don’t forget that two lanes are now proposed for the overpass, not three as DOT has stated at every meeting. That will cause huge backups for about a mile.

    Prove it.

    So even during the off-peak speeds will vary from 10 or 15 mph to 25 mph, when they currently are 30 and 35 mph (with average speeds of about 25 when you consider traffic signals). The new average speed will be about 15 or 20 mph.

    Prove it.

    That means that during the off-peak buses travel no faster but cars travel slower and trips are increased by 5 or 10 minutes. No one benefits.

    If the bus lanes really aren’t needed off-peak, they don’t have to be in effect then.

    But then you’ll just complain about the signage.

    So why do it? As far as making the streets safer, that is also a myth because you need to look at safety on a per mile basis, not by how long a street is. Longer streets will naturally show up with more injuries and deaths than shorter streets.

    It’s a myth that slowing down traffic makes streets safer for pedestrians? Um, no, it’s not.

    As you can also see, pedestrian traffic is extremely light, unlike Queens Blvd. We don’t need islands, at least not at this location.

    If by “this location” you mean the entire length of Woodhaven Boulevard, you are dead wrong. As we’ve said before, you don’t assess the demand for a bridge by counting the number of people who swim across.

  137. Except that we are not talking about 60,000 people losing two minutes. With only two general lanes at critical points, those 60,000 people could lose 15 to 30 minutes during peak hours and 5 to 10 minutes during the off-peak when bus riders would not gain any time from exclusive lanes. You are the one skewing the numbers, not me.

  138. You may have a point here. But if buses aren’t delayed by cars during the off-peak. and they are not, why do you need an exclusive lane in the first place? Too waste $200 million and make automobile trips take longer?

  139. But if buses aren’t delayed by cars during the off-peak. and they are not, why do you need an exclusive lane in the first place?

    So buses can move faster in the peak, of course.

  140. http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/hypothetical?s=t

    I should have known that you would ignore my ALL-CAPS disclaimer.

    With only two general lanes at critical points, those 60,000 people could lose 15 to 30 minutes during peak hours and 5 to 10 minutes during the off-peak when bus riders would not gain any time from exclusive lanes. You are the one skewing the numbers, not me.

    At least I’m frank to admit that my numbers are made up. You should be so honest.

  141. So what is your point? Of course if those numbers were real, SBS would be a no brainier.

    In Part 4, I believe, also used made numbers, which I admitted were made up, to illustrate the point that all users need to be considered. But your comments only address the needs of bus riders and pedestrians. That is the problem I have with you.

  142. My point was that your statement above:

    But as I have been saying from the beginning, if speeding up a the buses a little during the rush hours causes more people to lose time than gain time, exclusive lanes would not be a good idea.

    is inaccurate. You can’t just count people; you also have to look at how much time people are gaining or losing. I thought that was obvious from what I wrote.

    But your comments only address the needs of bus riders and pedestrians. That is the problem I have with you.

    And your articles and comments afford motorists an absolute veto over any possible improvements for other travelers. That is the problem I have with you.

  143. Sorry if I wasn’t clear thatime. Of course o wasn’t only considering people. I was also counting lost time and time saved which was made amply clear in the ypotheticl

  144. It’s getting exceedingly difficult to enter comments here. The partial comment above was a Disqus comment, yet I was no given the option of editing it, so let me start again.

    Sorry if I wasn’t clear that time. Of course I wasn’t only considering if people gained or lost time, but how much time was gained or lost. That was made amply clear in the hypothetical example I gave in Part 4.

    If more time would be saved by bus riders than would be lost by cars and trucks and there were more bus riders than other users, I would have no problem in supporting SBS. So you shouldn’t have a problem with me after all.

    And as far as your earlier point that the exclusive lanes do not have to be in effect during the off-peak, that would be true if SBS was still proposed. The proposal now on the table is BRT which would have physically separated lanes. I do not see how they could be in effect only part time.

  145. There were three or four deaths last year on Woodhaven. Supposedly it was more than on any other street in Queens. Woodhaven is also much longer than most other streets. To know if it is dangerous it would have to have more deaths and injuries per mile than most other streets. We do not know if that is the case or not or if all four deaths were the result of a single accident or four separate occurrences. There are also spikes that occur.

    If Woodhaven and Cross Bay shared the same name and there were three deaths on Cross Bay last year, would that make the corridor nearly twice as dangerous? Of course not. But it would seem so the way statistics are kept by street name with no regard to street length.

    That makes long streets like Queens Blvd, Atlantic Avenue, Woodhaven and Linden Blvd seem more dangerous than they really are. Avenues in Manhattan I am sure have more deaths and injuries than major cross streets like 42 St and 34 Street, so does that make the avenues more dangerous because they may be three times as long as crosstown streets? We need to see deaths and injuries per mile and number of occurrences over time to make a determination of where the most danger is.

  146. Yes, this isn’t 1972. In 2015, there shouldn’t be any arterials, only local streets and highways. Who cares if no one

    who drives a car

    can get anywhere.

    I’m really sick of having to insert that assumption into your comments. It would help if you realized that what I’m doing is making your bias explicit, but you don’t seem to grasp that at all.
    I don’t have the time or the fortitude to respond to the rest of your rantings this morning.

  147. No we don’t build a bridge by counting the number of people who swim across. We build a bridge where there is demand

    Actually a lot of bridges and tunnels were built to replace ferries, which amounts to the same thing doesn’t it?

    I’m not sure why you are basing your claim of no demand on a few videos taken at midday, all in short succession. What daily or peak pedestrian volume would you consider sufficient to warrant a safety median on a road with a 120 foot crossing?

  148. NYC’s crash dataset lists 106299 persons injured in 2013 and 2014. 15741 injuries have no street listed. 559 fatalities, 101 have no street.

    http://www.nyc.gov/html/dot/html/about/commbio.shtml

    This says there are six thousand miles of streets. So that’s 8.86 injuries/mile/year. The dataset lists 559 persons killed, or 0.047 persons killed/mile/year.

    Woodhaven is ~four miles long, and had 466 injuries, so ~58.2 injuries/mile/year. Six fatalities listed, so ~0.75 persons killed/mile/year. But some of those injuries and fatalities with no street listed could have been on Woodhaven. So 58.2 injuries/mile/year is a low end estimate. To add some perspective,

    http://www.nyc.gov/html/dot/downloads/pdf/201106_ft_hamilton_ave_slides.pdf

    This stretch of Fort Hamilton Parkway is listed as having 59 injuries/mile/year, putting it in the 93% “severity percentile of boro corridors.”

    Woodhaven is far more dangerous than average.

  149. It is not necessary for the rules actually to be enforced, oir to prepare to make them real, for the MTA to make these claims, and making the rules – and the machines for that matter – work costs money.

  150. You are, of course, correct. Thanks for quantifying the issue.

    Allan has been claiming for months, probably years, that there’s no safety problem on Woodhaven. He also has repeatedly denied that improved pedestrian safety is an explicit goal of SBS, even though it’s been explicitly listed as a goal in the presentations.

    Yet he’s happy to fabricate an emergency response problem and attribute it to the agencies that might be affected if there were actually an emergency response problem.

    It’s been over a month and for some reason Allan hasn’t responded to this yet. ***crickets***

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