Yesterday, the NY League of Conservation Voters, Riders Alliance, and Transportation Alternatives came together and held a rally at the steps of City Hall for the NYC Streets Plan. Together we advocated for a fully funded NYC Streets Plan in Mayor Adam’s Executive Budget and to increase the budget for funding to $3.1 billion.
If we are to improve the safety, accessibility, and quality of our transportation network and our City’s streets, we must fund and implement the NYC Streets Plan. This plan will help make existing transit infrastructure more efficient and reliable as well as make street infrastructure safer for pedestrians and cyclists. It will not only help solve bottlenecks and congestion, but also reduce car dependency and emissions in our City. It also intends to protect residents through enforced speed cameras and bus lanes, and reformed on-street parking. This plan will reinforce the use of public and micro-mobility options, will make our City safer and cleaner, and will put money back into our underfunded transit system.
At the rally we saw dozens of supporters showing up to support this plan and speaking about how much it would change their lives. Many of our dedicated Council Members who have been fighting for this plan also attended including: the Chair of the Council’s Transportation and Infrastructure Committee Selvena Brooks-Powers, in addition to Council Members Amanda Farias, Shekar Krishnan, Sandy Nurse, Chi Ossé, Carlina Rivera, Lincoln Restler, Crystal Hudson, and Alexa Aviles.
Chair Brooks-Powers supports the NYC Streets Plan and believes that transportation equity is crucial in New York City. She has spoken about the necessity of transportation options especially in communities that are transportation deserts like low income communities and communities of color. In order to address, she emphasizes, there needs to be investment in the NYC Streets Plan.
Carlos Castell Croke, the Associate for NYC Programs at the NY League of Conservation Voters also spoke at the rally: “In order to effectively fight climate change and protect public health, we need to reimagine how people live and move in our City. We know that transportation is the leading source of emissions in the State and in the Nation, mainly due to personal automobiles and heavy duty vehicles burning fossil fuels. The NYC streets plan shows us how we can build a more interconnected City. A City that protects cyclists, a City that invests in public transit, and a City that prioritizes pedestrians over cars.”
At our rally we were joined by partners from the New York’s Public Transit Union, Families for Safe Streets, Straphangers Campaign, Las Deliveristas, New York Lawyers for the Public Interest, Regional Plan Association, Bronx Health Reach, and Tri-State Transportation Campaign.
If one thing is clear, it is we need to do more to make our City’s streets, open spaces, and transportation more safe, efficient, equitable, and accessible.
This is why we are incredibly grateful to Mayor Adams for announcing, this weekend, a historic investment of more than $900 million over five years to work on the NYC Streets Plan. This funding will help the City implement street safety and public transportation infrastructure critical to making our streets cleaner and safer. As Mayor Adams himself stated “This investment is a game-changer.”