May 29th, 2019: Vision Zero vs. the Window King

Looking good today weatherwise:

Wednesday Weather

Wednesday Partly sunny, with a high near 74. North wind 7 to 9 mph.

Wednesday Night A chance of showers and thunderstorms. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 62. South wind 5 to 9 mph. Chance of precipitation is 50%.

Sunrise: 5:29am

Sunset: 8:19pm

However, there's been plenty of ticketing in the waning days of Bike Month, with the latest hotspot at 31st and 6th:

If you manage to successfully run that gauntlet on a bike they should give you a reward and not a ticket.

Meanwhile, just when you thought you'd heard every possible rationale for hitting cyclists with cars, here comes the "I'm running late to school" excuse:

If only there were some way to tell drivers were dangerous before they hit somebody...

Oh well, we can dream.

And on Memorial Day, this happened:

Shardy Nieves, the bike messenger who runs the Track or Die Instagram account and organizes cycling events under the same name, says he got to Morningside Park at 5 a.m. to save a space for his eighth-annual Memorial Day BBQ. "This is a community BBQ, NOT A RIDE OUT!!!" his Instagram announcement states. Around 9:30 a.m., he says he was approached by an NYPD Lieutenant, the first of three he would see that day. "The Lieutenant comes up and asks if this is the Track or Die barbecue, and I say yeah this is our barbecue," Nieves told Gothamist. "He said, 'Yeah, well do you have a permit for this?' I said no one will have a permit for today, the Parks Department doesn't issue permits on the major holidays."

Surprisingly, the NYPD did not then proceed to confiscate the grill for not having a bell on it.

Nevertheless, it does seem they're determined to use "Bike-Outs" as the basis for harassing certain groups of cyclists:

But why play up the positive angle? Rideouts involve bicycles, driver inconvenience, and kids who by and large aren’t white, and so when it comes to baiting the American public, they hit the trifecta. And now here comes the NYPD to take your bicycle away in the name of protecting the citizenry from a non-epidemic of total non-violence.

In legal news, Streetsblog has the rundown on the Morris Park Avenue lawsuit:

The battle over Mayor de Blasio’s signature street safety initiative was set in motion last month when a Bronx judge blocked the city from implementing a “road diet” plan to tame drivers on a 31-block stretch of Morris Park Avenue. Judge John Higgitt accepted the plaintiffs’ argument that the project, which was the fruit of months of public hearings and safety studies, still needed more review.

That review will begin tomorrow at Bronx Supreme Court.

Basically they're suing the city for trying to make the street safer, on the basis this will somehow destroy the local businesses, including the "Window King:"

The city’s court papers also take aim at Window King owner Nick Ferraro, who argues in court papers that he receives a delivery of 150 to 200 windows once a week — a delivery that requires his supplier to double park in front of the firm to unload the material, a process that takes three to five hours. Ferraro claimed in court papers that his supplier, whom he does not name, has threatened to halt deliveries if the redesign goes forward.

“It defies logic that a supplier providing up to 200 windows per week would walk away from that business,” the city argues in its latest filing on May 22. “Moreover, Window King’s current practice of a three- to five-hour delivery while the delivery trucks are double-parked in a lane of traffic is illegal. Illegal activity can hardly be the basis for irreparable harm.”

Blocking the street on a regular basis to receive a five-hour window delivery and then suing the city for its Vision Zero policy is very possibly the most obvious ironic sight-related metaphor since the eyes of T.J. Eckleburg in "The Great Gatsby."

As for the idea of a group of businesses suing the city for trying to keep their customers alive, on the surface of it this would appear to defy logic, but perhaps they just want local residents to continue shopping like every day could be their last.

And finally, while we're suing the city for making the streets safer, in the Netherlands they're letting people ride bicycles through tunnels:

Silly Dutch, when there's a transit strike you're supposed to drive!

Everybody knows that.