Gridlock Sam's Master Plan: Commercial Vehicles

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Each Thursday in April, Sam Schwartz, aka "Gridlock Sam" at the Daily News, former NYC Traffic Commissioner, president and CEO of Sam Schwartz Engineering PLLC, a traffic planning and engineering firm, explains another facet of his plan for equitably pricing NYC transit and tolls.  This week he discusses commercial traffic and what he calls the "Verrazano Bridge boondoggle."  

Comments [13]

@John from Long Island:

"has he ever driven on the Belt? It is very often a parking lot condition"

^^They want to build a BJ's at Caesars Bay Bazaar at Bay Parkway and a WalMart at Gateway Center. The Belt will be undriveable.

Apr. 19 2012 11:18 AM

Part of the reason why we have so much truck traffic is the fact that the City isn't a port city anymore. Its an embarrassment that one of the largest cities in the world doesn't have a commercial port. I've been to Boston, Vancouver, Los Angeles, Miami, San Francisco, New Orleans - each of those cities has been able to maintain a commercial port while creating waterside parks and recreation. Our lack of a viable commercial port is another Bloomberg failure.

I wonder what solution Gridlock Sam would have to the increase in prices of goods and services that will result from congestion pricing. This city already burdens businesses with high taxes and fees, now we plan on charging them even more. I was listening to another radio show where a trucker (many of whom are independent contracters) complained about the cost of transporting goods into NYC already and how little money they make after gas & tolls. When will it get to the point when the truckers just say "Fugettaboutit" and no longer are willing to do NYC jobs?

Apr. 19 2012 11:09 AM
Nick from UWS

The destruction of New York's freight piers is one of the stupidest things NY has ever done. On a par with knocking down Penn Station. New York is run by morons. Nothing like having one of the greatest natural ports on the planet and not using it for the benefit of the oil companies.

Apr. 19 2012 11:00 AM
john from long island

does sam live in manhattan? Does he have family in NJ? has he ever driven on the Belt? It is very often a parking lot condition. You couldnt rebuild it well enough to accomodate all the traffic. I will then have to drive thru Manhattan, and thru the local streets of brooklyn.

Apr. 19 2012 10:58 AM
Xtina from E. Village

Just close off those non-expressway streets to trucks and they will have to use the Verrazano. Also make it a two way toll.

Apr. 19 2012 10:57 AM
Amy from Manhattan

It's often said that if you build more roads (or expand the existing ones) they'll be filled by more cars. Is this true or just a truism? If it's true, how will it affect Sam's plan?

Apr. 19 2012 10:56 AM
Joe from Bayside

As a general idea, isn't the NYC traffic problem nearly impossible to solve because of all the funneling and bottlenecks because the city is made up of islands - 4 separate pieces of land ( 2 of which are long and skinny) necessitating tunnels and bridges.

Apr. 19 2012 10:56 AM

can we use less STUFF?!?

Apr. 19 2012 10:55 AM
bob from huntington

The HOV lane concept on the LIE is bassackwards: Put trucks in the HOV lane so that cars don't have drive around them in the other three lanes. During rush hour with stop-and-go traffic, trucks take so long to shift gears and get up to speed that they greatly slow traffic--increasing delays, increasing air pollution, etc. Plus, the volume of trucks in the righthand lane during rush hour hinders the entry of cars to the LIE.

Also, rewarding hybrid drivers with access to the HOV lane during rushhour is a mis-guided, unjust experiment in social engineering that rewards the more afluent.

Apr. 19 2012 10:54 AM
Sheba from Detroit

How about limiting deleveries to stores to night or early morning hours so that truck traffic will be less during the day

Apr. 19 2012 10:54 AM
Bobby G from East Village

Face facts. The cause of the Verazzano boondogle is two words. Guy Molanari. It should against the law because it harms the common good.

Apr. 19 2012 10:49 AM
Arthur Aptowitz from Forest Hills, NY

Ask Sam where he gets the multi-millions of dollars to widen the Belt Parkway La\nes and redo almost all the Bridges so the trucks fit under them!

Apr. 19 2012 10:44 AM
Marc Naimark from Paris

Here in Paris, the city and other entities are pushing for a return to water-borne freight. For example, two chains of supermarkets are now shipping merchandise to some of their Paris stores by barge on the Seine from ports near their warehouses in the suburbs.

Another project is to adapt tramway trains for freight shipments.

NYC was born and grew up as a port: how is water used for freight, and how could it be used? Similarly, the city has an extensive subway network; have there been any thoughts about using it for commercial traffic?

Apr. 19 2012 06:07 AM

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