Letters to the editor, Sept. 22

Thanks for the memories

Thank you, Joe McGrath, for your Soapbox article “Nobody asked me about the old days, but…” in the Sept. 1 issue, about living in Stuyvesant Town in the 1940’s, 50’s and 60’s.

My parents and I were original tenants of Stuyvesant Town, and your article brought a rush of tears to my eyes and truly touched my heart. Although I have been exiled far from the home I love, living in Minneapolis for many years, my love for Stuyvesant Town
remains undiminished.

Thank you again for the article and for bringing back vivid memories of that era. What a time that was!

With sincere appreciation,

Richard Luksin

Cyclists support, not hurt local businesses

While I bristled at Clark Vogel’s September 1 anti-bike letter, I was even more disappointed by T&V’s choice to title the letter “Bike Lanes to Bankruptcy.”

That unfortunately added some weight to a notion that’s sometimes repeated but is utterly false: that bike lanes and/or bicycling hurt the local economy. Local businesses in Manhattan are supported overwhelmingly by people who arrive by transit and on foot.

For those people, and for those who arrive by taxi, parking is not an issue. People who do drive their own cars to retail destinations in this area account for a very small number of transactions, and besides, it’s not as if the loss of a few parking spaces makes those people actually disappear.  Mr. Vogel’s suggestion that they’re all now taking their transactions online, hurting the shops on 1st and 2nd Avenues, is a big stretch.

To bash bicycling, Mr. Vogel paints it as something that doesn’t contribute to the city’s economy the way driving does, but his examples of fees and gas taxes show how drivers send money to the government, not into the economy.

Meanwhile, car congestion is a known significant drag on the region’s economy.  And Mr. Vogel’s wish to make cyclists all switch to surface transit would not increase the city’s coffers, but the MTA’s.

Nor would it increase public safety: injuries to all street users – including car occupants – have gone down between 40 and 50 percent on avenues that have protected bike lanes.

Finally, Mr. Vogel also mentions quality of life. He should hear the ceaseless din of car horns that invades every room of my 8th floor apartment at 14th St. and 1st Ave. all night every Friday. I only wish some of those people were on bikes instead of in cars.

David Dartley, ST

Bike concerns not being addressed

I would like to thank college instructor Elliot Markson for referencing my name four times in his self-serving Sept. 15 response to my letter, “Bike lanes to bankruptcy.”

He neglected to respond to the safety and financial concerns noted therein, namely licensing, registration and insurance.

He can also contemplate our new “Dodge City” environment with the illegal motorized bikes/mopeds/scooters also zipping about every which way, which will be in addition to the proposed DOT ivory tower bike rental plan soon to be implemented big-time.

Hope his liability insurance is current.

Clark Vogel

Every pedestrian for himself in ST/PCV

Re: “Cyclist hits woman in Stuy Town,” T&V, Sept. 15

Rose management says they have changed the policy about biking in PCV/ST. Have they decided to ignore the laws of New York State and City? The vehicle and traffic laws mandate that all bicyclists obey the same rules of the road as any other vehicle.

As we can see from the chaos that has been laid down on First and Second Avenues, the streets have become more dangerous for pedestrians and this incident and the “policy change” by Rose has now brought more chaos into our once sheltered community.  The management should, at the very least, instruct Public Safety to set up road checks for law-breaking bikers and be authorized to issue summonses.

I believe the officers are still empowered to write tickets for illegal parking so, too should they have the authority to stop this lawlessness.

On October 1, a new law goes into effect, which requires biking accidents such as this to be recorded by the police.

Unfortunately, the management’s lack of understanding will invite more accidents. So as residents here who fear for their safety: If you see something, say something!

Charles G. Sturcken, ST

Rats an ongoing problem here

Re: “Garbage attracting rats at 240 1st Ave.,” T&V, September 15

Rats are no surprise here in ST/PCV. Unfortunately, our beautiful new gardens provide a haven for rats. On my way home tonight, just around 7 p.m., a large rat scurried across my path directly in front of Oval Film. Dusk is the bewitching hour but not the only time that I have spotted rats in and around the Oval. We have got a continuing, significant problem.

In 1983, when I moved here, and for decades after, a stroll around the Oval constituted one of the great pleasures of Stuy Town living. Now, when walking the Oval, I’m poised for rat encounters… and am almost never disappointed.

It’s irksome when an article, such as the one last week, suggests that rats are actually news. Well, perhaps their presence in our buildings is news. But management’s admission of this widespread and troubling problem would be a true banner headline.

Eileen Lyons, ST

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