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Posts from the Streetsblog Category


Streetsblog Is Hiring: Cover the Evolution of NYC Streets and Transportation

After three tremendous years covering the Streetsblog NYC beat, Stephen Miller is moving on next month to serve as Council Member Jimmy van Bramer’s legislative and budget director. New York City government is gaining a special talent, and we’re going to miss him.

Among Stephen’s many gifts are his knack for putting sharp questions to public officials, his aptitude for quickly synthesizing even the most arcane policy matters (just look at his body of work on parking minimums!), and his seemingly limitless fount of story ideas. All that, and he has probably shattered the Streetsblog record for community board meetings attended.

To hear my full rhapsody, you’ll have to come to the sendoff we’ll be giving him. Stay tuned for details.

In the meantime, please spread the word that Streetsblog is hiring


We’re looking for a talented journalist to help Streetsblog NYC cover the movement for safe streets and effective transit in the five boroughs.

We welcome applications from engaging writers, reporters, and advocates who want to contribute to an influential source of information and commentary on transportation and planning issues. The ideal candidate will have a firm grasp of local politics and a keen sense of how Streetsblog coverage can advance transportation policies that improve conditions for walking, bicycling, and transit.


We are seeking a reporter to craft original content, interviews, event coverage, and commentary. Applicants should be enthusiastic about the notion that journalism can be conducted with integrity and fidelity to the truth while espousing a clear point of view. Knowing how to effectively impart a message is a critical skill for this position.

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NYPD: Drivers Injured 1,228 Pedestrians and Cyclists in June, and Killed 10

Image: NYPD

Image: NYPD

Twenty people died in New York City traffic in June, and 4,795 were injured, according to the latest NYPD crash data report [PDF].

As of the end of June, 62 pedestrians and cyclists were reported killed by city motorists this year, and 6,277 injured, compared to 62 deaths and 7,080 injuries for the same period in 2014.

Citywide, at least 11 pedestrians and one cyclist were fatally struck by drivers: two pedestrians in Manhattan; one pedestrian in the Bronx; three pedestrians and one cyclist in Brooklyn; one pedestrian in Queens; and two in Staten Island. Among the victims were Dorothy Gerstenfeld, Moshe Grun, Ethan Villavicencio, Martin Celmer, Diana Ealkamenetz, Jeri Pearson, Millwood Hughes, David Craig, Betty Jean DiBlasio, Yekutiel Rapp, an unnamed male pedestrian in Manhattan, and an unnamed male cyclist in Brooklyn. Motorists killed at least one child and four seniors in June: Ethan Villavicencio, 7; Dorothy Gerstenfeld, 88; Diana Ealkamenetz, 67; Millwood Hughes, 93; and Yekutiel Rapp, 66.

Drivers killed at least two pedestrians whose deaths were not reported by NYPD.

Across the city, 769 pedestrians and 459 cyclists were reported hurt in collisions with motor vehicles. Per NYPD policy, few of these crashes were investigated by trained officers.

Of 12 fatal crashes on surface streets reported by Streetsblog and other outlets, one motorist was known to have been charged for causing a death. Based on NYPD and media accounts, at least seven victims were likely walking or cycling with the right of way when they were struck, including one victim who was on the sidewalk and one who was hit while inside a building. Police and district attorneys are known to have applied the city’s Right of Way Law only once in June. Historically, nearly half of motorists who kill a New York City pedestrian or cyclist do not receive so much as a citation for careless driving.

In one case, immediately after a pedestrian was killed, police exonerated the driver by telling the press the victim was “outside the crosswalk.”

Read more…
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Transpo Funding Intrigue in Washington State

Here’s a look at what’s happening around the Streetsblog Network today…

Washington Governor Jay Inslee may go ahead and swallow the “poison pill” that Republican legislators insisted on including in a state transportation package, reports Frank Chachiere at Seattle Transit Blog. That would mean Inslee will go ahead with a low-carbon fuel standard for the state, which will torpedo a funding package for roads, transit, and street safety projects. With Inslee having already secured a separate $15 billion authorization for Sound Transit that will be untouched by the poison pill, however, local transit advocates don’t seem too worried about the governor’s strategy.

A developer’s rendering of a mixed-use project in the works by the Rhode Island Avenue Metro station in DC. Not depicted are the 2,000 parking spaces the plan calls for. Image via GGW

Darla Letourneau at BikeWalkLee has a mid-year progress report on street safety in Florida’s Lee County. After spikes in pedestrian and cyclist fatalities in recent years, street safety is getting more attention from the press and policy makers. However, injury rates for walkers and bikers don’t show signs of improvement yet. “The bottom line is that while there are lots of efforts underway to make it safer for people walking and biking in Lee County, we need to step up our game, if we expect to lower our stubbornly high bike/ped fatality and injury numbers,” she writes.

At Greater Greater Washington, Jonathan Neeley reports on a big mixed-use housing project coming to the Rhode Island Avenue Metro station. While the development would replace car-oriented retail, the plan currently calls for 2,000 parking spaces — more than the number of new apartments. Is this the best DC can do?

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Students Plead With Manhattan Community Board 7 to Act on Street Safety

Community Board 7 on the Upper West Side is where street redesigns get delayed indefinitely, where the urgency to prevent people from getting killed in traffic dissipates into the ether, and where the same people get reappointed for years on end to posts where they can block safety improvements.

Last night, kids who go to school in the neighborhood came out for a civics lesson at CB 7 and to deliver a message about what they want to see change. Streetfilms’ Clarence Eckerson and Streetsblog publisher Mark Gorton were there.

Streetsblog USA
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See You in September — I’m on Maternity Leave!

Greetings loyal readers.

Hopefully the baby turns out cuter than this!

Hopefully the baby turns out cuter than this!

This is a friendly public service announcement to let you know that I will be on maternity leave for 12 weeks beginning tomorrow. I’ll be back to a somewhat regular schedule, hopefully still able to form complete sentences, when September rolls around.

In the meantime, we’re very lucky to have veteran Streetsblog USA editor Tanya Snyder filling in, writing daily headline round-ups along with Katie Pearce and posting a few items every week. Tanya has just recently given birth to a baby of her own (her second) so take it easy on her! And if you have any tips, email her at tanya [at] streetsblog [dot] org.

I’m grateful to all our readers and the crew here at Streetsblog, and I’m looking forward to a little uninterrupted time with my first born. (It’s a boy.)

Coincidentally, the timing of this birth aligns nicely with the latest extension of the federal transportation bill expires. Anyone want to take a guess how old junior will be by the time Washington passes a long-term bill?



Via Streetsblog Denver
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Get Ready for Streetsblog Denver


I’m pleased to welcome the newest member of the Streetsblog collective: Starting Monday, you can get news and commentary about safe streets, effective transit, and walkable development in the Mile High City by pointing your browser to Streetsblog Denver.

Streetsblog Denver arrives at a pivotal moment. The city is growing at an incredibly rapid pace, and it desperately needs streets and transportation policy that respond to these changes with intelligence and foresight. While there’s a huge grassroots appetite for walkable, bikeable neighborhoods and excellent transit access, for the most part the city’s streets remain stuck in the cars-first status quo. Working with an energetic advocacy community and the support of dedicated readers, Streetsblog Denver aims to change that.

Streetsblog Denver is run by a new, Denver-based non-profit of the same name, under the umbrella of the Colorado Nonprofit Development Center. The site is possible thanks to the generous support of The Gates Family Foundation, the New Belgium Family Foundation, Zeppelin Development, Joel Noble and Julie Hock-Noble, and the Natural Resources Defense Council. Editorial guidance and technical support come from Streetsblog’s main office in New York. Many thanks to Streetsblog founding editor Aaron Naparstek for getting the ball rolling.

Streetsblog Denver editor David Sachs

Streetsblog Denver Editor David Sachs

Leading Streetsblog Denver is editor David Sachs, who lives in Congress Park. David brings a background in journalism, communications, and political organizing to the job. As editor-in-chief of the Alexandria Times in Virginia, he regularly covered transportation and development. David’s been hard at work cultivating sources and generating story ideas, and starting next week he’ll be cranking out posts every workday.

Denver came of age in the highway era, and its streets still reflect that. Wide, car-centric roads like Colfax, Broadway, Colorado, and Federal feel more like Autobahns than functional urban streets. Key measures of street safety are heading in the wrong direction, with pedestrian deaths on the rise. While the city has a reputation as a bike-friendly place, the truth on the ground doesn’t measure up — bicycling on Denver’s high-speed streets will get your pulse pounding for all the wrong reasons.

While transportation planners have done well connecting the region’s suburbs to downtown via rail, it’s not enough. The Regional Transportation District still caters to Denver’s suburban past. Its rail lines circle the city but barely penetrate it. For city dwellers, Denver’s neighborhoods remain fragmented by a landscape designed for cars, without effective transit to connect them.

But as a young city, Denver is also very capable of envisioning a new way of doing things.

Read more…


Streetsblog Retains BlankSlate to Strengthen Our Bottom Line

Earlier this year, I wrote about the imperative for Streetsblog to generate more revenue from our website. With so many unsold impressions, ads were a clear opportunity to put Streetsblog’s sizable reach to use strengthening our bottom line. Today I’m pleased to announce that we’ve retained BlankSlate to help us sell ads and make good on that potential.

BlankSlate is an experienced shop that works with several other publishers similar in size to Streetsblog, in addition to owning and operating the Brooklyn real estate site Brownstoner. Their team will be selling ads and setting up ad networks on Streetsblog, and you’ve probably noticed the new ad zones on the site this week. BlankSlate has also set up filters to prevent automotive and fossil fuel industry advertisements from appearing on Streetsblog, which should keep many heads from exploding.

Streetsblog is a 501(c)3 non-profit, and we continue to rely on reader contributions and foundation support to fund our work. Ads are the third leg of the stool, and we’re excited to be working with BlankSlate to build a durable publishing operation.

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Welcome Back, Streetsblog Chicago!

Congratulations to John Greenfield, Steven Vance, and the readers and supporters who enabled Streetsblog Chicago to pull off a rousing comeback and resume regular publication today.


Congrats, John.

At the beginning of the year, budget constraints compelled OpenPlans to sever our relationship with the Chicago team after two years of publication. Right off the bat, John told me he would revive Streetsblog Chicago under the umbrella of a new non-profit organization. Volunteering his time, he proceeded to set up a 501(c)3 from scratch and raise the funds necessary to reboot the site. It was a big personal risk for John, and he embraced it. (He even kept posting headline stacks every weekday morning!)

With an outpouring of reader donations, a surge of local sponsorships, and key support from the Chicago Community Trust, which provided a $25,000 challenge grant, the Chicago team has met its initial fundraising targets. Streetsblog Chicago will now be getting back into the swing of chronicling the city’s progress toward more walkable, bikeable, transit-friendly streets.

John will continue to serve as both editor- and fundraiser-in-chief for the Chicagoland Streets Project, his newly-formed non-profit. We’re looking forward to more excellent coverage from him, Steven, and the roster of contributors they work with.

In other news from the Streetsblog publishing world, Damien Newton and Melanie Curry launched a new flavor yesterdayStreetsblog California will combine Melanie’s coverage of statewide news out of Sacramento with local stories from the Central Valley, the Inland Empire, and other regions outside the beats of Streetsblog LA and Streetsblog SF. Streetsblog California is funded by The California Endowment and produced by the California Streets Initiative, the non-profit run by Damien that also produces Streetsblog LA.

We’ll have Streetsblog California up in our top menu shortly. No other state is connecting the dots between transportation, land use, and climate change like California right now. We’re seeing momentous changes like Level of Service reform that should be a model for the rest of the country. If you want to keep up with the latest on these advances (as well as helmet law stupidity), Melanie’s coverage is a must-read and you should check it out.

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Woodhaven and Cross Bay Boulevards Select Bus Service Public Workshop: Woodhaven Blvd, Queens Blvd to Union Turnpike

Join the NYC Department of Transportation and the MTA to give feedback on the first round of block-by-block street designs and proposed Q52/53 SBS bus stops for the Woodhaven/Cross Bay Boulevards Select Bus Service project. Each workshop will focus on the section of the corridor noted below; however, input on the entire corridor is welcome.

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Riders Alliance’s Strategize for Better C Train Service

Riders Alliance members have been working hard with our local elected officials and the MTA to win better C train service.

Brainstorm with your neighbors and fellow riders for faster and more reliable C train service!