New York City Launches LPI-for-Bikes Pilot Program; Albany Limps Toward Budget Deadline

New York City Launches LPI-for-Bikes Pilot Program

Yesterday morning, we joined City Council Member Carlos Menchaca and the New York City Department of Transportation at the corner of Atlantic Avenue and Smith Street in Brooklyn for the launch of a pilot program that will allow people on bikes to get a head start at intersections with leading pedestrian intervals (LPIs), where the pedestrian walk signal turns green a few seconds before drivers get a green light.

The pilot, which will be in effect at a total of 50 intersections in Brooklyn, Manhattan and Queens, will run for six months, after which NYCDOT and the NYPD will evaluate safety data. If successful, the effort could roll out citywide.


The city began installing LPIs several years ago, and there are now more than 2,500 of them throughout the five boroughs. A study released by NYCDOT in 2016, Don't Cut Corners, found that crashes in which pedestrians and cyclists were killed or seriously injured declined by 56% at intersections with LPIs.

In addition, city data indicates that 65% of cyclist fatalities and almost 90% of serious injuries to cyclists occur at intersections, so the potential safety effect of the LPI-for-Bikes pilot is significant.

StreetsPAC worked closely with Council Member Menchaca on developing legislation that would permit people on bikes to adhere to pedestrian signals, which Menchaca introduced in 2016. The legislation hasn't advanced, primarily due to concerns on the part of the NYPD. However, with NYCDOT's support, Menchaca was able to gain the Police Department's support for the pilot effort.

We're confident that the data from the pilot study will show that following pedestrian signals will improve safety for cyclists, without any adverse effect on pedestrians or drivers, and will be adopted citywide, either through passage of Council Member Menchaca's bill or through an administrative change. Either way, we'll be there to advocate for its implementation.

Here's more coverage of the initiative from Streetsblog and amNewYork. In addition, StreetsPAC Executive Director Eric McClure spoke with Fox 5 NY's Linda Schmidt about the safety benefits of the LPI-for-Bikes pilot (click the image below for video).


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March 22, 2 pm: Rally to Protect NYC Kids with Speed Safety Cameras

From our friends at Families for Safe Streets and Transportation Alternatives:

"Earlier this month, two children were killed by a reckless driver while crossing a New York City street. A few weeks before that, another child was struck and killed while riding his bicycle. That’s three young New Yorkers who have been killed in the first three months of 2018 by deadly driving, and 40 during the Vision Zero era.

"Each and every one of these tragedies could have been prevented. But we have been too slow to implement known remedies. TransAlt and Families for Safe Streets have been fighting for more speed safety cameras to protect school zones for years, and we’ve been frustrated with the progress in Albany year after year.

"This Thursday at 2 p.m., side-by-side with Mayor de Blasio, we will call for action. Please join us.

"Speed safety cameras are proven to dramatically reduce speeding and save lives. More of our schools should have them. And right now, there is a unique opportunity for us to ensure speed safety cameras are included in the state budget.

"Last week, one thousand New Yorkers, led by hundreds of kids, marched in Brooklyn to demand an end to traffic violence NOW. They’re not willing to wait any longer.

"Stand with us on Thursday and say you’re not willing to wait either."

We'll be with Families for Safe Streets and T.A. tomorrow at City Hall – please join us to demand that the legislature and the Governor include reauthorization and expansion of the city's speed safety camera program in this year's budget!

Rally to Protect NYC Kids with Speed Safety Cameras
Thursday, March 22
2:00 p.m. (please allow extra time for security screening)
City Hall

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L Train Testimony; Congestion Pricing Petition; Get Marty Golden Off the Road!

StreetsPAC Weighs in on Plans for the L Train Shutdown

This past Thursday, the City Council's Committee on Transportation held an oversight hearing on the planned April 2019 shutdown of the L train, and StreetsPAC was at City Hall to testify.

The proposal for accommodating the 225,000 daily riders of the L who will be displaced by the 15-month project to repair the Canarsie Tubes mark a significant step forward by the MTA and New York City Department of Transportation, but in our opinion, the plans need to go farther. In particular, we believe that "peak hours" bus-only and HOV3+ restrictions proposed for 14th Street and the Williamsburg Bridge need to be significantly extended, if not to 24/7, at least to something much closer to that.

In addition, we have concerns about how passenger egress from the more than one bus per minute slated to carry erstwhile L train riders across the bridge will be facilitated, and we harbor doubts about an already-struggling subway system's ability to accommodate 160,000 additional daily passengers on the G, J, M and Z lines.

Of course, the burden on surface transportation would be greatly eased if a robust congestion-pricing plan were in effect by the time that the L is shut down, a point we highlighted in our testimony, which you can read in full here.

There's more about the hearing and the MTA/NYCDOT plans in The New York Times, on Streetsblog, and at Second Avenue Sagas.

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StreetsPAC's Testimony to City Council on the L Train Shutdown

StreetsPAC presented the following testimony yesterday to the New York City Council's Committee on Transportation, at its oversight hearing on the impending 2019 shutdown of the L train for repairs to the Canarsie tubes:

While the plan released yesterday by the MTA and the New York City Department of Transportation is a significant step forward in addressing the transportation crisis that will be created by the 15-month shutdown of the Canarsie Tubes beginning in 2019, it needs to go farther.  Our hope is that this is merely an opening bid that will be revised and made stronger over the coming months.

For starters, we believe that buses running across the Williamsburg Bridge should have a dedicated, physically separated lane, discreet from trucks and turning cars. In order to move 70 buses with 3,800 passengers per hour across the bridge, they must be able to travel unencumbered by other vehicles.*

In addition, the bus approaches to the bridge must be dedicated and protected. While HOV3+ restrictions are absolutely necessary, we have deep concerns about enforceability of those restrictions, and would like to see a detailed enforcement plan.

Furthermore, we believe that occupancy restrictions on the bridge should be in place 24/7, as commuting patterns and timing will likely evolve during the shutdown.  The same is true for bus-only restrictions on the 14th Street “Core Busway,” which should be extended well beyond rush hours. We are certain to see major increases in for-hire vehicle traffic along the affected route, the effects of which will only be mitigated by dedicating space for much more efficient buses.

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StreetsPAC-Endorsed City Council Candidates Win Big!

Congratulations to the winners of last night's citywide elections, and especially to City Council Members-elect Carlina Rivera, Keith Powers and Justin Brannan (who all made us look smart for endorsing their candidacies early on), along with the 13 incumbent Council Members whom we endorsed for re-election. Congratulations, too, to Brian Cunningham, who ran a spirited third-party race for the 40th Council District seat after finishing a strong second in the September 12 primary. This isn't the last we'll hear from Brian.

Kudos as well to Mayor Bill de Blasio, Public Advocate Letitia James, and Comptroller Scott Stringer, who all handily won re-election, and all the other victors in city races.

Overall, StreetsPAC-endorsed City Council candidates won 16 of 17 races last night, and 16 of 23 primary contests, and no StreetsPAC-backed candidate finished worse than second in any primary or general election contest. That speaks to broad popular support for street-safety and transit improvements, and would appear, we believe, to be confirmation that our questionnaire and interview process leads us to choose strong and viable candidates for public office.

Thank you, of course, for your support for our work. Without your generous financial support, we wouldn't be able to back candidates with significant monetary contributions, and without your volunteer help, we wouldn't be able to help get them over the finish line. Your retweets, likes and shares of our social media content all help too, more than you know, as we continue to build a political movement for safer streets and better transit.

One last time, here are the candidates whom we endorsed in yesterday's general election. Congratulations to all!


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StreetsPAC General Election Voter Guide

New York City's general election is today, Tuesday, November 7th! The polls are open from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m., and anyone registered to vote in New York City may cast a ballot.

StreetsPAC has endorsed candidates in one-third of New York City's 51 Council Districts, 17 in all, in today's election. You can learn more below about each of the candidates whom we've endorsed, and the projects and issues they've committed to supporting as members of the City Council.

Turnout today will likely be among the lowest on record for a citywide election, which means that your vote for safe, complete and livable streets, and reliable, efficient and affordable mass transit, will undoubtedly make a meaningful difference in the outcome of your local City Council race – and in shaping the future of a city of which we can all be proud.

To check your voter-registration status, find your polling location, and to see a sample ballot, please visit And most importantly, please make time to go to the polls today to vote for a StreetsPAC-endorsed candidate!

Meet the Candidates

StreetsPAC2017CouncilEndorseesGeneralDistricts.jpg (Numbers correspond with the Council District for which each candidate is running.)

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Remembering the Victims of the Hudson River Greenway Terror Attack

Yesterday's horrific vehicular attack on cyclists and pedestrians along the Hudson River Greenway, and on the occupants of a school bus at the intersection of Chambers and West Streets, was the deadliest terror attack in New York City since 9/11. It was also a stark reminder of the damage that can be done to vulnerable street users, intentionally or not, by a driver of a motor vehicle.

We extend our most heartfelt condolences to the victims, their families, and their friends. And we urge city and state officials to act without delay to improve the safety of the Hudson River Greenway, and all of New York City's bike paths, sidewalks, public plazas and streets. We must commit to substantially reducing the presence of cars and trucks in the city's densely populated areas, further reducing speed limits, and building the protective infrastructure necessary to keep pedestrians and cyclists safe. We must rapidly expand the use of automated, non-biased, enforcement cameras, and implement a congestion-pricing program.

Not next year, not next month. Now.

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ACTION ALERT: Urge Your Democratic Assembly Member to Support Move NY!

As you probably know, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced support for congestion pricing in August, saying that it "is an idea whose time has come." Earlier this month, he formed an advisory panel tasked with developing proposals that would both reduce traffic congestion on New York City streets and create a dedicated revenue stream for MTA funding.

While the Governor's coming around to the benefits of road pricing is certainly a welcome development, the fact is that a perfectly good plan for addressing both congestion and MTA funding already exists: the Move NY Fair Plan. Created by transportation expert Sam Schwartz (who's serving on the Governor's Fix NYC advisory panel) and economist Charles Komanoff, the Move NY plan has been on the table for several years, and was introduced as legislation by Assembly Member Robert Rodriguez more than a year and a half ago.

ActionAlert.pngHere's where the action comes in. Tomorrow, Assembly Democrats are gathering in Albany to discuss legislative priorities for the next session. We know that congestion pricing is on the agenda, so it's critical that you contact your Democratic Assembly Member TODAY to ask him or her to support Move NY. It's doubly or triply important if you live in the Bronx, Queens or Brooklyn.

You can locate your Assembly Member, and his or her contact information, using your home address, hereBe sure to call or email today. Here's a sample script, but it will be even more effective if you put it into your own words:

"Hi, I’m a voter in your district and urge you to support the Move NY version of congestion pricing because the plan is the only one on the table that will fix our transit and road system, curb traffic, fill transit deserts and lower fares for low-income New Yorkers. [You can add a statement tailored to your own neighborhood, such as "traffic on Queens Boulevard" or "terrible subway conditions in Bay Ridge."] I'm counting on you to make sure that the Move NY plan is passed by the New York State Legislature. Thank you."

It's critical that Democratic Assembly Members hear from as many constituents as possible before they meet tomorrow. We're counting on you to contact yours.

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Important Voter Registration Deadline This Friday!

Thanks to New York State's archaic voter-registration rules, if you're a registered voter who wants to switch political parties or an independent who wants to identify with a party, and you want to be eligible to vote in the 2018 primaries, you must register to do so by this Friday, October 13th. Yes, that's for the 2018 primary elections, which will play a critical role in determining the next Governor, State Attorney General and Comptroller, and members of the State Senate and Assembly.

register_to_vote.jpgAnd if you're not already registered to vote, doing so by Friday will enable you to vote in next month's citywide election (changing or choosing party affiliation now will not prohibit you from voting on November 7th).

You can check up on your registration status, register online or download an application, see voting guides and much more at

Don't delay – register today!

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StreetsPAC Primary Election Voter Guide

Today is New York City's primary election. Polls are open from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m., and if you're registered with a political-party affiliation, you are eligible to vote in your party's primary.

StreetsPAC has endorsed candidates in nearly half of New York City's 51 Council Districts, 23 in all. Below, you can read more about each of the candidates whom we've endorsed, and the projects and issues they've pledged to champion in the City Council.

Turnout for today's election promises to be anemic, which means that your vote for safe, complete and livable streets, and reliable, efficient and affordable transit, can really, truly help sway a Council race.

To check your voter-registration status, find your polling location, and to see a sample ballot (a few of our endorsed candidates are not facing primary challenges, so they won't appear on your ballot), please visit And most importantly, please take a few minutes to go to the polls today – lines will be short – and vote for the StreetsPAC candidate of your choice!

Meet the Candidates

(Numbers correspond with the Council District for which each candidate is running.)

Council District 1, Manhattan: Margaret Chin (Incumbent) – Chin, who’s running for a third term representing Lower Manhattan, has been an outspoken advocate for pedestrian safety and placard reform. She plans to introduce a Council resolution calling for restoration of the two-way toll on the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge, and will advocate for the reopening of Manhattan’s Park Row with a pedestrian path and protected bike lane. And she’ll continue to lead the charge for placard reform and real enforcement of placard abuse.

Council District 2, Manhattan: Carlina Rivera (Open Seat) – Rivera, running to replace term-limited Councilmember Rosie Mendez, is a former City Council aide with a strong record of local organizing.  She wants to expand Select Bus Service and improve pedestrian and bicycling infrastructure in the district, and supports implementing dedicated bus lanes and protected bike lanes and eliminating curbside parking in favor of loading and pick-up/drop-off zones along 14th Street for the duration of the L train shutdown.

Council District 3, Manhattan: Corey Johnson (Incumbent) – Johnson, who’s running for his second term, distinguished himself as a vocal proponent of the Times Square pedestrian plaza when an uproar erupted over costumed characters and desnudas in 2015.  He’s committed to advocating for protected crosstown bike lanes in his West Side district, which stretches from Canal Street to Lincoln Square, and will undertake an effort to better allocate the precious street space along 8th Avenue near the Port Authority Bus terminal.  He’s also interested in improving the way the city manages truck deliveries, including improving curb access for trucks and restricting deliveries to off-hours.

Council District 4, Manhattan: Keith Powers (Open Seat) – Powers, a former Chief of Staff in the Assembly, is running for the East Side Council seat held currently by the term-limited Daniel Garodnick. He supports the creation of a "PeopleWay" on 14th Street during the extended shutdown of the L train, and would like to see complete-streets treatments implemented on 5th and 6th Avenues. He'll also advocate for closing the gaps in 2nd Avenue's protected bike lane, and will work to complete the East River Greenway.

Council District 5, Manhattan: Ben Kallos (Incumbent) – Kallos, who first won his East Side seat in 2013, is a Vice-Chair of the City Council’s Progressive Caucus.  He’s committed to filling the gaps in the Second Avenue protected bike lane, and to adding additional crosstown bike lanes in his district.  He’s also working to bring Citi Bike to Roosevelt Island, and Select Bus Service to 96th Street, and is dedicated to completion of the East Side Greenway.

Council District 6, Manhattan: Helen Rosenthal (Incumbent) – Rosenthal, who's running for a second term, faces a strong challenge from the very capable Mel Wymore. She's determined to make Central Park's loop fully car-free, and will push for protected bike lanes on the Park's transverses. She's also committed to working with the Parks Department to improve the hilly detour for cyclists along the Hudson River Greenway between 72nd and 83rd Streets. In addition, she plans to advocate for a dedicated rush-hour bus lane on Amsterdam Avenue, and will work for smarter curbside regulations to reduce double parking.

Council District 7, Manhattan: Mark Levine (Incumbent) – Levine, who’s running for a second term in the Council, has been a stalwart in advocating for transit improvements and safer streets.  He’s committed to making Central Park, once and for all, completely car-free, to advocating for protected bike lanes on Manhattan’s Riverside Drive, and to leading an effort to improve conditions on the city’s greenways, including the Cherry Walk section of the Hudson River Greenway, which is badly in need of safety improvements.

Council District 8, Manhattan/Bronx: Robert Rodriguez (Open Seat) – Rodriguez, who has been a member of the State Assembly since 2011, is running for the open seat held by the City Council’s term-limited Speaker, Melissa Mark-Viverito. He’s led the effort for the Move NY Fair Plan in the Assembly, and will continue to push for its adoption in the Council. He’ll also advocate for extending the 2nd Avenue subway, having been a strong supporter of that project in Albany. In addition, Rodriguez supports expansion of Citi Bike, with increased subsidies for low-income users, and will work to expand deployment of speed and red-light cameras.

Council District 10, Manhattan: Ydanis Rodriguez (Incumbent) – Rodriguez, who has distinguished himself as the outspoken chair of the City Council’s Committee on Transportation, is running for his third term.  He’s a proponent of making portions of Broadway permanently car-free, and is committed to working for implementation of Fair Fares and a five-borough bike-share system.  He also plans to advocate for creation of a comprehensive, long-term transportation plan for New York City, along the lines of London Mayor Sadiq Khan’s Transportation Manifesto.

Council District 13, Bronx: Marjorie Velázquez (Open Seat) – Bronx native Velázquez, who survived a serious car crash in 2012, is running for the open Council seat in 13th District.  Her priorities include expediting the construction of new Metro North stations in Morris Park and Parkchester/Van Nest, and advocating for new NYC Ferry service to Throgs Neck, Ferry Point and City Island.  She’s also committed to improved bus service, with additional routes and better reliability, including round-the-clock service to City Island and more express buses to Manhattan.

Council District 14, Bronx: Randy Abreu (Challenger) – Abreu, an attorney who worked in the Department of Energy under President Obama, is seeking to represent the neighborhood in which he grew up.  He wants to expand Select Bus Service in the Bronx, especially with signal priority, and will work to bring the MTA’s Freedom Ticket reduced-fare pilot program to Metro North.  He’ll also advocate for Citi Bike expansion throughout the district, and he’s committed to expanding the use of speed and red-light cameras.

Council District 15, Bronx: Ritchie Torres (Incumbent) – Torres, who has yet to turn 30, is the only first-term Council Member to hold a leadership position. He's committed to passing a Council home rule message supporting the Move NY Fair Plan, and is interested in increasing deployment of speed cameras for research and education purposes. He'll also advocate for making the Grand Concourse a true complete street, and to expand and improve bicycling infrastructure on East Tremont and Arthur Avenues. He also wants to see Vision Zero education made an integral part of police training.

Council District 16, Bronx: Vanessa Gibson, (Incumbent) – Gibson, who’s running for a second term representing the West Bronx, chairs the Council’s Public Safety Committee. She pledges to continue fighting against traffic violence and for Vision Zero. In her district, she supports the redesign of the Grand Concourse with protected bike lanes and other enhanced street designs that improve safety for all users. As Public Safety Chair, she remains committed to working with all stakeholders to increase street safety, and to providing much needed resources to the NYPD's Collision Investigation Unit, and will further support efforts to improve public outreach, education and enforcement of existing laws.

Council District 18, Bronx: Amanda Farias (Open Seat) – Farias is a native of the area she seeks to represent, the district currently led by term-limited Council Member Annabel Palma. Her top priority is improving transportation access for constituents. She'll advocate to bring NYC Ferry service to Soundview, expand Select Bus Service in the district (especially connecting to the ferry), and work to improve subway accessibility. She's committed to bringing Citi Bike to the district, and to complete-streets initiatives that will ensure neighborhood sidewalks and streets are accessible to all.

Council District 26, Queens: Jimmy Van Bramer (Incumbent) – No Queens elected official has been a better advocate for safe and complete streets than Van Bramer, the Council’s Majority Leader.  He’s committed to advocating for more protected bike lanes, including on Skillman and 43rd Avenues, and for better bike-network connectivity, and he’ll push the Departments of Transportation and Design and Construction for speedier implementation of critical Vision Zero infrastructure.  He also plans to lead the effort to reopen the Queensboro Bridge south walkway.

Council District 28, Queens: Richard David (Open Seat) – David is running for the Queens seat recently made vacant by the criminal conviction of Ruben Wills. His priorities include a push for improved bus service, including real-time arrival information, and the redevelopment of the Jamaica Bus Terminal, with a focus on improved pedestrian safety. He also wants to see the bike network expanded throughout the 28th District, and will advocate for the restoration of the Commuter Tax, with the proceeds dedicated to improving mass transit. Whoever wins the seat, be it David or capable opponents Hettie Powell and Adrienne Adams, it will be an upgrade for residents of the 28th District.

Council District 33, Brooklyn: Stephen Levin (Incumbent) – Levin, who’s running for a third term, achieved the near-impossible when he prevailed on the Department of Transportation to redesign downtown Brooklyn’s Jay Street with protected bike lanes and pedestrian islands.  He’s committed to advocating for a comprehensive plan to minimize commuting disruptions during the L train shutdown, and will push for a complete-streets overhaul of his district’s dangerous Meeker Avenue.  He also hopes to solve the police-parking and bike-lane-blocking problem on Schermerhorn Street, and will continue his efforts to achieve equity in the handling of the city’s waste and reform of the carting industry.

Council District 34, Brooklyn/Queens: Antonio Reynoso (Incumbent) – Reynoso, who’s established himself as a leader in the City Council on matters of pedestrian and cyclist safety, is running for a second term.  He’s adamant about upgrading cycling conditions in his district with protected bike lanes and the expansion of Citi Bike.  As Chair of the Council’s Committee on Sanitation and Solid Waste Management, Reynoso will push for major safety improvements on the part of private carters, as well as changes to the city’s snow-removal protocol to ensure that crosswalks and bus stops are cleared in a more timely manner.  He’ll also explore how traffic laws might better distinguish between bicycles and motor vehicles, in particular with the treatment of red lights and stop signs at T-intersections.

Council District 35, Brooklyn: Ede Fox (Challenger) – Fox, whom we backed in the 2013 race for this seat, has worked for Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito and was Chief of Staff to Council Member Jumaane Williams. Her top transportation priority is establishing more safe options and north-south travel connections through the district, including new and expanded Select Bus Service routes, improved local bus service, and better cycling infrastructure.  She’s also committed to pushing to make the Franklin Avenue subway station fully accessible, and to encouraging more diversity and youth participation on local Community Boards.

Council District 38, Brooklyn: Carlos Menchaca (Incumbent) – Menchaca, running for re-election in his Sunset Park and Red Hook district, was one of the very first candidates endorsed by StreetsPAC in 2013.  He’s been the leading champion for the complete-streets redesign of Brooklyn’s 4th Avenue, and is committed to seeing his bill to permit bicyclists to use leading pedestrian interval signals enacted into law.  He will also continue his work to ensure that underserved communities have a seat at the table in determining the future of their streets and transportation systems.

Council District 39, Brooklyn: Brad Lander (Incumbent) – Lander, who’s running for a third term, has been as true a champion for safe streets and better transit as there is in the City Council.  He wants to see the protected bike lanes planned for Brooklyn’s 4th Avenue extended all the way to Atlantic Avenue, and he’s committed to exploring the expanded deployment of speed cameras for educational and research purposes (while working to win the right for New York City to deploy and operate automated enforcement as it sees fit).

Council District 40, Brooklyn: Brian Cunningham (Challenger) – Cunningham, born and raised in Flatbush, is a former State Senate and City Council staffer. He's dedicated to making Vision Zero projects a local priority. While another contender for the seat, Pia Raymond, has done noteworthy work to increase street safety along the Nostrand Avenue corridor, we are backing Cunningham for his commitment to advocate for expansion of the area's nascent bike lanes along Empire Boulevard, Brooklyn Avenue, and Kingston Avenue, along with his support for a robust proposal to create a safe pedestrian plaza at the Franklin Avenue triangle. He also pledges to make Prospect Park permanently car-free, and to work with the MTA to give the Prospect Park subway station the much-needed facelift straphangers deserve. 

Council District 43, Brooklyn: Justin Brannan (Open Seat) – Brannan, a Bay Ridge native, has worked for the de Blasio administration and for term-limited Council Member Vincent Gentile, whom he hopes to succeed. He wants NYC DOT to look at extending the redesign of 4th Avenue south of 65th Street, and is an advocate for improving the Brooklyn Waterfront Greenway. He supports restoring the two-way toll on the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge, and backs the effort to build a pedestrian and cycle path on the bridge as part of the Harbor Ring plan. He’d also like to see truck traffic shifted from local streets to the Belt Parkway, where it’s not currently permitted.



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