Thursday, January 17, 2008

Congestion Pricing Forum Coverage

The big news out of yesterday's forum is: more organized backing for congestion pricing, which is great news. First, the NYT reports that the Transit Workers Union finally came out to support an initiative that will funnel hundreds of millions a year to our transit infrastructure. And that wasn't the only good news:

Second, a new coalition of pro-congestion pricing groups, calling itself Communities United for Transportation Equity, presented research suggesting that black and Hispanic riders and low-income riders have the longest commutes of any residents of the New York region.

Of the 750,000 New Yorkers who travel more than an hour each way, two-thirds make less than $35,000 a year and only 6 percent make more than $75,000 a year, the group noted, citing an analysis by the Pratt Center for Community Development of census data.

This has been a long time coming; an explicit answer to the utterly false, disingenuous brand of populism spouted by congestion pricing opponents.

Speaking of false and disingenuous, Streetsblog responds to Councilman David Weprin's latest meretricious attacks here. Let's hope that the end of his council term marks the end of his political career as well.

Finally,Streetsblog has a post on the "Virtuous Cycle" alluded to by Lee sander in yesterday's Op-Ed in the Metro:
By decongesting the streets not just in Manhattan but throughout the city, as commuters from all the boroughs leave their cars at home congestion pricing would make travel times for bus riders faster. That leads to a virtuous cycle. As traffic is reduced, buses become faster. Faster buses attract more riders out of their cars, which reduces traffic further.

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