Meet StreetsPAC's 2021 Endorsees!

2021 Endorsees: Citywide | Manhattan | Bronx | Queens | Brooklyn

Citywide


EricAdams.jpgEric Adams, Mayor (Open Seat) – Eric Adams, who emerged victorious from a crowded and competitive Democratic mayoral primary in June, has been a reliable ally to advocates of safe and complete streets for more than a decade.

Mr. Adams, who was elected Brooklyn Borough President in 2013 after serving in the State Senate for seven years, has often credited a 2010 walk he took in Park Slope with "20's Plenty" founder Rod King for solidifying his views about the importance of traffic-safety issues.

As New York City's next Mayor, he is determined to revitalize the city's Vision Zero initiative. No elected official has shown up more often for victims of traffic crashes than Mr. Adams since he assumed the Borough President's role, and he clearly takes traffic violence personally. Come January, he'll be in a position to get Vision Zero back on track – with a focus on equity that has been missing from the program to date.

He introduced legislation while a State Senator calling for better education of drivers, has supported Neighborhood Slow Zones, and, with an eye to promoting equity in the city's cycling infrastructure, championed the Flatbush Avenue bike path, which now connects Grand Army Plaza and Ocean Avenue.

Mr. Adams's "Moving Forward Together" transportation plan calls for building true Bus Rapid Transit corridors, especially outside Manhattan, focusing first on wide corridors with service roads like Brooklyn's Linden Boulevard, and for accelerating the rollout of electric buses. He's pledged to stripe 150 new miles of bus lanes and busways, citing the success of Manhattan's 14th Street busway as a blueprint.

He also intends to go to bat for improved transit accessibility, such as faster implementation of elevators and ramps in the city's subway stations, reopening of existing-but-closed subway entrances, expansion of the Fair Fares program, and broad implementation of the Freedom Ticket. He's called for speedy implementation of the city's congestion-pricing program.

A strong proponent of active health and its many benefits, Borough President Adams can often be found riding his bicycle around Brooklyn, and he has for several years hosted a diverse Earth Day ride to call attention to the need for better street designs. In May, following a bike ride with members of our board, he announced his commitment to creating 300 miles of new protected bike lanes within his first four years in office, including bike "superhighways" running under elevated roadways and rail lines.

He intends to expand Citi Bike, and has cited development of a citywide network of electric bike- and scooter-share, especially in underserved areas, as a priority. Mr. Adams has also called for significantly increasing safe and secure bike-parking options for New Yorkers. He's a champion of the Harbor Ring, and will advocate for improved bike access on state-managed bridges like the Verrazzano-Narrows. He has a vision of a city in which it's safe for kids to bike to school.

Borough President Adams has also spoken frequently on the campaign trail about inequity in the city's built environment, and he plans to expand the Open Streets program, especially in lower-income communities of color. He's embraced Transportation Alternatives' 25x25 Challenge for reallocating the city's public space from cars to people, again with an eye to underserved corners of the city.

Mr. Adams has also talked often about his experience in European cities, and the creative ways in which they allocate street space and promote alternatives to driving. New York City has fallen behind a number of its peers when it comes to smart street design, but as Mayor, Eric Adams will have the opportunity to lead our transformation into a pedestrian-, bike-, and transit-friendly city that is the envy of the world.

 

BradLanderCropped.jpgBrad Lander, Comptroller (Open Seat) – Brad Lander has dedicated himself to making streets safer since first winning elective office in 2009. He was an early supporter of the Prospect Park West redesign, and his refusal to waver in the face of some very politically connected opposition to the bike path was instrumental in facing down the years-long legal effort to remove it. In 2016, he patiently listened to constituents complaining about Citi Bike's expansion into his Brooklyn district, while firmly letting them know that the bike-share system was here to stay in a statement that Streetsblog called "pitch-perfect."

Mr. Lander was a vocal proponent of Fourth Avenue's road diet, pushing the Department of Transportation to speed up completion of the protected bike lanes that now span the four miles from Atlantic Avenue to 64th Street. He's fought for better accessibility at subway stations, and to restore the B71 bus.

Most notably, Mr. Lander's biggest safe-streets legislative accomplishment grew from a terrible tragedy that occurred just a block from his district office in 2018. Following the devastating crash that killed two young children at Fifth Avenue and Ninth Street, Mr. Lander, in partnership with advocates, developed the Reckless Driver Accountability Act, working deftly and relentlessly to steer the bill through the City Council, overcoming a number of legal and procedural hurdles. What became the Dangerous Vehicle Abatement Program will, once fully implemented, require the city's most persistent dangerous drivers to take a safe-driving class or have their vehicles impounded.

For good measure, Mr. Lander also made sure that DOT quickly redesigned Ninth Street following that deadly crash, adding protected bike lanes and pedestrian refuges.

Mr. Lander has put forth a number of detailed plans for how he would manage the Comptroller's office. He'll oversee the city's capital-projects tracker, which he legislated in the City Council, and is intended to bring transparency and accountability to the billions of dollars the city spends each year on infrastructure. He plans to use the Comptroller's powers to make the financial case for street redesigns, and to create an audit unit dedicated to transit and transportation. He will use audit and contract-registration powers to push for fleet reductions, and track implementation of the Better Bus Action Plan.

For both his track record, and his commitment to promoting progressive transportation policies as the city's next fiscal steward, we enthusiastically endorse Brad Lander to be New York City's next Comptroller.

 

Manhattan


MarkLevineCropped.jpgMark Levine, Manhattan Borough President (Open Seat) – Mark Levine, who currently represents Upper Manhattan's 7th Council District and chairs the Council's Health Committee, is our pick for Manhattan Borough President.

Mr. Levine, whom we endorsed when he won his current seat in 2013, and again four years later, has been a leading voice for better bus service and safer streets. He championed 125th Street Select Bus Service when he ran for office, bucking opposition from other elected officials, and introduced a bill in 2017 to speed up the city's implementation of transit-signal priority. He supported expansion of the Amsterdam Avenue protected bike lane into Harlem, a road diet for Riverside Drive, and pedestrian-safety improvements on Morningside Avenue, all in the face of Community Board intransigence. And he backed the replacement of three city-owned parking garages on West 108th Street with a 200-plus-unit affordable senior-housing project that included a shelter.

As Borough President, Mr. Levine will diversify Manhattan's Community Boards, and he's committed to working to pedestrianize sections of Broadway and implement safe crosstown bike paths through Central Park. He will advocate for replicating the highly successful 14th Street busway on other major east-west streets, and has put forth a plan to rezone parking garages to allow them to serve as local package-delivery hubs, which could facilitate a major increase in e-cargo bike deliveries.

AlvinBraggCropped.jpgAlvin Bragg, Manhattan District Attorney (Open Seat) – Alvin Bragg rose to the top among an impressive group of contenders in the Democratic primary, both among the voters and in our endorsement process.

Mr. Bragg most recently served as New York State's Chief Deputy Attorney General, and is now Co-Director of New York Law School's Racial Justice Project. He's expressed a commitment to treating vehicular violence as serious crime while also seeking alternatives to incarceration, has important experience managing a large prosecutorial and investigative staff, and has shown a willingness to innovate.

Mr. Bragg has pledged to put a greater focus on traffic violence as Manhattan's top prosecutor, and plans to staff a robust vehicular-crimes unit to investigate any fatal, and many serious-injury, crashes, independent of NYPD investigations. He intends to create a Manhattan version of the Center for Court Innovation's Brooklyn Driver Accountability Program, which has proven effective in changing driver behavior without incarceration.

Additionally, Mr. Bragg has vowed to challenge the "Rule of Two" that allows too many dangerous motorists to escape meaningful consequences for the harm they cause, and as Manhattan DA, will routinely seek technological evidence, like cell phone records and information from vehicles' event data recorders, in performing crash investigations.

We believe that Mr. Bragg will bring a new, serious focus on vehicular crime to the Manhattan DA's office, which will have a direct and positive effect on the safety of the borough's streets.

ChristopherMarteCropped.jpgChristopher Marte, Council District 1, Manhattan (Open Seat) – Christopher Marte, who nearly beat current Council Member Margaret Chin in the 2017 primary for this seat, is a Lower East Side native who most recently has served as New York State Director for Arena. He supports pedestrianizing the Seaport District, as well as a substantial part of the Financial District, and wants to see a protected crosstown bike lane on Chambers Street, among other routes. Mr. Marte will advocate to allow delivery cyclists to use the Hudson River Greenway, and has pledged to introduce legislation that will require that "protected" bike lanes actually provide physical protection for cyclists.

CarlinaRiveraLarge.jpgCarlina Rivera, Council District 2, Manhattan (Incumbent) – Carlina Rivera, a 2017 StreetsPAC endorsee who is running for re-election in her Lower East Side district, has championed multiple transportation issues during her first term in the Council. Her support for implementation of the 14th Street busway was crucial, and she was prime sponsor of the bill that requires the creation of a temporary bike lane when construction interferes with existing bike infrastructure. Earlier this year, the city enacted into law her bill making the Open Streets program permanent, more equitable, and more robust, and her bill requiring a restaurant to provide restroom access to delivery workers who are making deliveries on their behalf recently passed the Council. Ms. Rivera has called for the widening of the Second Avenue bike lane, and if re-elected, she'll work to expand loading zones and implement more curb extensions and daylighting.

ErikBottcherCropped.jpgErik Bottcher, Council District 3, Manhattan (Open Seat) – Erik Bottcher, who was Corey Johnson's Chief of Staff for six years, is running to succeed his former boss. He’s committed to bringing street-safety improvements to 10th Avenue, including a protected bike lane, and has pledged to work to extend the Sixth Avenue protected bike lane south of 9th Street. Mr. Bottcher will seek to make the Dangerous Vehicle Abatement Program more stringent, and to push Albany to remove restrictions on the operation of speed cameras, and his sanitation plan calls for getting trash off crowded city sidewalks and into containerized waste corrals. He's also committed to timely and complete implementation of the Streets Master Plan.

KeithPowersCropped.jpgKeith Powers, Council District 4, Manhattan (Incumbent) – Keith Powers, who won his East Side Council seat in 2017 with StreetsPAC's backing, has delivered on many of his campaign promises, including extension of Sixth Avenue's protected bike lane to Central Park, the closing of the gap in the Second Avenue bike lane, and the creation of the busway on 14th Street. In his second term, he's committed to advocating for more protected bike lanes and safer intersection treatments in his district. He's a supporter of creating a busway on Fifth Avenue, and also wants the city to replicate the successful 14th Street model on 34th and 96th Streets.

JulieMeninCropped.jpgJulie Menin, Council District 5, Manhattan (Open Seat) – Julie Menin has an impressive resumé of public service, including stints as Commissioner of the Department of Consumer Affairs and the Mayor's Office of Media and Entertainment, and most recently, as Director of the city's highly successful census effort. Ms. Menin has released a detailed and progressive transportation agenda, which includes a call to reimagine the FDR Drive in order to reconnect Eastsiders with the waterfront. She would expand sidewalks, advocate for more busways, and for integrating Citi Bike into the transit system, and supports expanding the city's network of protected bike lanes.

GaleBrewerCropped.jpgGale Brewer, Council District 6, Manhattan (Open Seat) – Gale Brewer, who represented this Upper West Side district currently held by Helen Rosenthal from 2002 to 2013, and who's been Manhattan Borough President for the eight years hence, feels like she still has a lot to contribute to public service. She plans to fight for more funding for Open Streets, particularly for programming, and for improved and expanded bus service, especially an increase in dedicated bus lanes. She's a strong supporter of creating an office of the public realm in order to end siloing in City Hall, and plans to introduce legislation to that effect once she's (back) in the City Council.

ShaunAbreu.jpgShaun Abreu, Council District 7, Manhattan (Open Seat) – Shaun Abreu, who’s running for the open seat in upper Manhattan now held by Mark Levine, won a hotly contested Democratic primary in June. He's committed to making sure that the city implements the Streets Master Plan fully and on time, and will advocate to remake the city's curbsides in order to facilitate deliveries, trash collection, and car sharing – and to put a dent in double-parking. He wants to extend the Amsterdam Avenue protected bike lane uptown, and supports a wide range of improvements to bus service.

 

Bronx


PierinaSanchezLarge.pngPierina Sanchez, Council District 14, Bronx (Open Seat) – Pierina Sanchez, who's a native of the district she's running to represent, served as New York Director at the Regional Plan Association before working on housing, land use, economic development and labor issues at City Hall. At RPA, she played a key role in drafting the 2017 Transportation and Equity Agenda issued by StreetsPAC and other advocacy groups. She'll continue to focus on those issues in the City Council, especially faster and more reliable bus service, an expanded Fair Fares program, and adoption of the Freedom Ticket for intra-city trips on Metro North and the LIRR. Ms. Sanchez will also advocate for redesigning streets for people, with more protected bike lanes and traffic-calming features, and she wants to eliminate parking placards for all but the most essential uses.

AmandaFariasCropped.jpgAmanda Farias, Council District 18, Bronx (Open Seat) – Amanda Farias was born and raised in the community in which she's seeking election. She ran for the seat in 2017, finishing second to Ruben Diaz, Sr., who is not running for a second term. Ms. Farias, a board member at the Riders Alliance, will prioritize improving transit access for residents of her East Bronx district. She'll advocate to expand the Fair Fares program to serve more low-income straphangers, and to bring Citi Bike across the Bronx River. She also wants to see a network of protected bike lanes connecting the district's neighborhoods, new busways, and a big increase in the number of Open Streets.

 

Queens


DonovanRichardsCropped.jpgDonovan Richards, Queens Borough President (Incumbent) – Mr. Richards, who represented Southeast Queens's 31st District in the City Council, frequently played against type in a district that in many places is more suburban than urban. He supported congestion pricing and speed cameras, and in championing the Downtown Far Rockaway rezoning in 2016, called for improved transit service, new bike lanes, and reduced parking requirements in the face of Community Board demands for more parking spaces.

In his State of the Borough address in March, and again in responding to our questionnaire and in his interview, Mr. Richards laid out an ambitious agenda for safer streets and better transit service. He will advocate for a network of protected bike lanes across Queens, expanded access to bike share, and bike parking at subway stations. He's pushing for busways around Jamaica to speed up commutes, and wants to expand Open Streets across the borough. And he's allocated about $3 million to build the security fencing that will allow for the opening of the Queensboro Bridge south outer roadway to bikes.

He's also begun reforming Queens's Community Boards, appointing more women, people of color, persons under 35 – and people who ride bikes.

TiffanyCabanCropped.jpgTiffany Cabán, Council District 22, Queens (Open Seat) – Tiffany Cabán, whom we endorsed in 2019 when she ran for Queens DA, handily won the June primary against a formidable field. Ms. Cabán supports redesigning streets, creating car-free superblocks, and lowering speed limits as ways to get Vision Zero back on track. She'll advocate for a 21st Street busway, and a Queens bus-network redesign that adds more service. She's also called for greatly expanding the Open Streets program, and for adding 500 miles of dedicated bus lanes and 500 miles of protected bike paths citywide. 

ShekarKrishnanCropped.jpgShekar Krishnan, Council District 25, Queens (Open Seat) – Shekar Krishnan, a civil rights attorney and activist, won a close primary to succeed term-limited Council Member Danny Dromm. Mr. Krishnan will prioritize building more transit corridors in disadvantaged neighborhoods, and more busways and dedicated bus lanes on streets like Northern Boulevard, where he supports a comprehensive redesign. He'll also advocate for a network of connected and protected bike lanes, and more space for pedestrians throughout the district.

JulieWonCropped.jpgJulie Won, Council District 26, Queens (Open Seat) – Julie Won, who works in tech and has a community-service resumé that fills a page, will bring an advocate's passion to the fight for better street design. While commuting on her bike last November, she was struck by a hit-and-run driver who left her in the street. She'll prioritize bike lanes that are protected by concrete, and supports comprehensive curb reform, including an end to the city's Stipulated Fine program. Ms. Won will also work to improve transit service, to expand the city's Fair Fares program, and to ensure that sidewalks and intersections are safe and accessible.

NantashaWilliamsCropped.jpgNantasha Williams, Council District 27, Queens (Open Seat) – Nantasha Williams, who nearly won the primary for the local Assembly seat in 2016, has 10 years of experience in government. She's a champion of the Freedom Ticket, and will advocate for bringing bike-, scooter-, and car-sharing programs to this eastern Queens district. Ms. Williams believes many wide local streets could be redesigned to help reduce speeding. She'd also like to see Open Streets efforts in places with high concentrations of restaurants, and a redesign of local bus routes to reflect the evolution in ridership patterns and community input.

FeliciaSinghHeadshot.jpgFelicia Singh, Council District 32, Queens (Open Seat) – Felicia Singh, an educator, Peace Corps veteran, and lifelong resident of Ozone Park, is running to succeed three-term Council Member Eric Ulrich. Her priorities are to improve mass-transit options for district residents, including better bus service from the Rockaway peninsula to the mainland, and more reliable subway service along the A line. She wants to expand Citi Bike service into southern Queens, with a corresponding expansion of a network of protected bike lanes to keep riders safe. Ms. Singh will also center accessibility by pushing for more elevators and a better state of repair at subway stations, and more bus shelters with benches to accommodate straphangers.

 

Brooklyn


AntonioReynosoCropped.jpgAntonio Reynoso, Brooklyn Borough President (Open Seat) – Mr. Reynoso, who had just sold his car to fund his initial run for office when we first encountered him in 2013, also happened to be making that run against the still-formidable former Brooklyn Democratic boss Vito Lopez. Seven-and-a-half years later, he's still riding a bike instead of driving, and has distinguished himself as perhaps the most outspoken member of the City Council on the need to move New York City away from its automobile-dominated status quo.

As Chair of the Council's Sanitation Committee, Mr. Reynoso led the effort to pass the Commercial Waste Zone effort that will eliminate millions of miles of dangerous truck trips every year. He pushed the Department of Transportation to move ahead with the Myrtle-Wyckoff pedestrian plaza in 2016, advocated for the physically protected bike lanes on Brooklyn's Grand Street, and last year, called on NYC DOT to build a busway on Berry Street.

Mr. Reynoso has an expansive progressive vision for the Borough Presidency. He wants to remake Atlantic Avenue, which he thinks should be a modern complete street of which Brooklynites can be proud, rather than the dangerous "embarrassment" it is today. He'll push the city to create a borough-wide network of protected bike lanes, and to expand Open Streets widely and equitably. He'll prioritize completion of the Brooklyn Waterfront Greenway, which has lagged for years, and is more than willing to commit capital dollars to expand bike- and scooter-share.

Like Mr. Richards in Queens, Mr. Reynoso has also pledged to overhaul Community Boards to make them much more representative of the neighborhoods they serve.

LincolnRestler.jpgLincoln Restler, Council District 33, Brooklyn (Open Seat) – Lincoln Restler, a founding member of the progressive New Kings Democrats who spent several years working in City Hall, is our choice to succeed term-limited Steve Levin. He's laid out a progressive vision for safer streets and better public transit, and believes the 33rd Council District should be a model in that regard for the entire city. He'll advocate for a network of concrete-protected bike lanes, safer intersections, improved bus service, and seamless integration of fares for all transit, including Citi Bike.

JenniferGutierrezCroppedJennifer Gutiérrez, Council District 34, Brooklyn/Queens (Open Seat) – Jennifer Gutiérrez is running to succeed soon-to-be Brooklyn Borough President Antonio Reynoso, for whom she served as Chief of Staff for several years. Gutiérrez is committed to getting Vision Zero back on track, and will prioritize safety improvements along Bushwick and Myrtle Avenues, and Broadway. She'll advocate for expanding the city's protected bike lanes into a true network, and for implementing 14th Street-style busways in the 34th District. Ms. Gutiérrez will also lobby for a comprehensive automated-enforcement system that adds failure-to-yield and blocking-the-box cameras to the city's toolkit.

CrystalHudsonCropped.jpgCrystal Hudson, Council District 35, Brooklyn (Open Seat) – Crystal Hudson, a former marketing executive who spent the past few years working in city government, won a convincing primary victory in June, and plans to make public transportation and safe streets a priority. She's laid out an expansive and progressive vision for improving transportation in New York City, from increased investment in Vision Zero, Bus Rapid Transit, and Open Streets, to transitioning the NYPD out of traffic enforcement, to expanding protected bike lanes and secure bike parking – all of it centered around equity for Black and brown New Yorkers.

SandyNurseCropped.jpgSandy Nurse, Council District 37, Brooklyn (Open Seat, Defeated Incumbent in Primary) – Sandy Nurse is a community organizer and carpenter who defeated the incumbent Council Member, Darma Diaz, in June's primary. She is determined to improve transit service for the district, in which two-thirds of residents don't have access to a car. She'll advocate for more Select Bus Service, accessibility upgrades – especially at the Broadway Junction transit hub – and expansion and connection of the bike network. Ms. Nurse also welcomes more Open Streets, as well as the creation of new pedestrian plazas.

Alexa Avilés, Council District 38, Brooklyn (Open Seat) – Alexa Avilés, who won a competitive primary to succeed term-limited Council Member Carlos Menchaca, is a foundation executive and activist. An advocate for making public transit free, she'll also push for more dedicated busways, and for widening and physically protecting bike lanes with concrete barriers. Ms. Avilés believes that Citi Bike should be integrated into the transit system, and expanded to include cargo bikes and adaptive bicycles. She also supports creation of superblocks, and equitable expansion of a better-funded Open Streets effort.

ShahanaHanif.jpgShahana HanifCouncil District 39, Brooklyn (Open Seat) – Shahana Hanif, who spent time working for term-limited Council Member Brad Lander, won the highly competitive primary to succeed him. She'll be a champion for safe streets and public transit, and will continue and enhance Brad Lander's legacy in the 39th District. Ms. Hanif supports building out a safe, connected bike-lane network, improving transit service and making the system more accessible, and dedicating more public space to people rather than cars. 

RitaJosephCropped.jpgRita Joseph, Council District 40, Brooklyn (Open Seat) – Rita Joseph, an educator who won a very competitive Democratic primary in June, will advocate for better public transit, including 14th Street-style busways and more-accessible stations. She'll push for faster expansion of Citi Bike and the protected lanes necessary to keep riders safe, as well as secure parking solutions for personal bikes. She'll also go to bat for the rapid implementation of congestion pricing, while making sure that her district gets its fair share of transit funding.

JustinBrannan2020.jpgJustin Brannan, Council District 43, Brooklyn (Incumbent) – Justin Brannan, who won his seat in 2017 with StreetsPAC's endorsement, has teamed up with State Senator Andrew Gounardes to begin changing the transportation culture in southern Brooklyn. Mr. Brannan, who has a love/hate relationship with the R train, will continue to advocate for improvements to subway and bus service as a key means of getting his constituents out of their cars. He plans to keep pushing for Citi Bike's expansion throughout his district – the first stations were deployed earlier this year – and supports subsidizing bike share to speed up the process. Mr. Brannan is also an advocate for delivery cyclists, and introduced recently passed legislation that will limit the distances of app-based deliveries as part of a package of bills intended to improve working conditions for Deliveristas.

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StreetsPAC supports candidates for public office who will champion Safe, Complete and Livable Streets.