We will freely admit that the governor’s slamming the brakes on a plan that would have made 250,000 straphangers miserable for 15 months (instead proposing significantly less misery for that time or perhaps five months longer) felt like a white knight rescue.
Andrew Cuomo is no knight. Nor is he, for that matter, an engineer.
Andrew Cuomo is a politician, and the experts he’s relying on for all this newfound information also have no experience with the subway they’re proposing to fix. So please forgive us if we’re not phone banking for Cuomo’s 2020 presidential campaign just yet. Especially since it’s still curious as to why the famously calculating governor would take such an incredible risk. The election against his formidable primary challenger is over, after all. NYC Transit President Andy Byford believes he is the one who would be on the hook if this plan fails spectacularly and he is of course right, but so would Cuomo since we all know he’s the one strong-arming all of this.
Workers remove signs surrounding the L train construction zone on East 14th Street after Governor Cuomo’s announcement for an alternative plan to the shutdown. (Photo by Hermann Reiner)
By Sabina Mollot
With the dreaded L train shutdown no longer in the works, residents along the East 14th Street construction zone are now wondering if this means they can finally get a break from the endless construction, at least on Saturdays, while others are hoping the city will undo the recent reconfiguration of East 20th Street that’s led to a slew of parking tickets and towed cars.
Susan Steinberg, president of the Stuyvesant Town-Peter Cooper Village Tenants Association, is among those wondering about both.
“What effect will the change have on the construction on East 14th Street?” she asked. “Did the relevant agencies just spend two years doing work they didn’t have to? Will East 14th Street still be a staging area? Will there be impacts on noise, dust and debris? Does that mean the East 20th Street redesign was not required? Can 20th Street be restored to what it was originally?”
Until those questions are answered, Steinberg said the TA has no position on the new plan.
A royal screw-up on East 20th Street
I am deeply disturbed by the current state of our city. It appears from all indications that our dear mayor and his erstwhile Department of Transportation have absolute “Royal Authority” to change whatever they feel like without any community review or input.
Case in point is their recent removal of parking spaces along 20th Street between First Avenue and the FDR. To make matters worse they (without any notice or review) changed the traffic pattern on 20th Street. One can no longer access the FDR North by turning left at 20th Street. There is absolutely no explanation for this. There is no traffic coming from the opposite direction. What is the problem?
Now if you are uninformed you must turn right going south rather than being able to turn left to go north. There is absolutely no logic whatsoever that would explain this.