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Radio Rookies

New Rookies Series Launches Wednesday

Friday, June 10, 2011

WNYC

Coming on June 15th the first in our latest batch of Radio Rookies stories, which will air every Wednesday and Thursday for the rest of the month.  First up, we'll hear from Alicia, who comes from a mixed-status home, meaning that half of her family are U.S. citizens, the other half are not.  Some people consider her an "anchor baby", but Alicia just feels confused about the expectations her parents have of her, as a citizen, and the guilt she feels that her sister lives under the fear of deportation.  And on Thursday a story about Facebook drama....  

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Features

Despite Heat, Conservators Wash and Wax Staten Island Monuments

Wednesday, June 08, 2011

On the docket for treatment were the 1893 bronze "Neptune Fountain" at the Snug Harbor Cultural Center, a 1915 sculpture of the Civil War captain Major Clarence Barrett across from Staten Island Borough Hall, and Allen Newman's iconic "The Hiker" in Tompkinsville Park.

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Features

NYC Parks: Picnics, Birdwatching and Biking in All the Five Boroughs

Wednesday, June 01, 2011

The solstice may not officially ring in summer till June 21, but that's no reason to hold off on celebrating this week's warm weather with family and friends (and a nice pair of white pants, perhaps) in one of the city's free public parks. Here's our shortlist to the best.

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Features

Where to Hit the Beach in New York City

Friday, May 27, 2011

It's time to stash the sleds and snowgear and dust off the boogie board: There's a beach in your borough in which you can lounge, slather on some sunblock and enjoy a good read. Don't forget to leave the cigarettes at home — city beaches are now smoke-free.

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Features

Staten Islanders Win Parks Haiku Competition

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Haiku by four Staten Island residents have won this year's Freshkills Park Haiku Contest. Contestants were asked to create haiku, which are poems of three lines with five, seven and five syllables, about the landfill-turned park. Click here to see the winning verse.

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It's A Free Country ®

Staten Island's Health Reform Darling Faces Budget Wrath

Friday, April 01, 2011

Henry Thompson, the CEO of the Community Health Center in Staten Island, is suffering from political whiplash.

After the clinic opened in 2006 – with nearly every bold-faced name in local politics in attendance – the clinic received a grant during the Bush administration two years later to build a new location. In 2009, the clinic received $1.3 million in stimulus dollars to expand hours and services.

Then came the federal health care overhaul last year, which provides $11 billion dollars to support and expand the network of clinics across the country.

But now, the clinic is one of six federally funded community health centers that could close if budget cuts passed by the House make it into a final compromise spending plan.

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WNYC News

DJ Megatron Slain in Staten Island

Monday, March 28, 2011

Staten Island hip hop promoter, radio and television personality DJ Megatron was shot and killed near his home in Staten Island at 2 A.M. on Sunday. DJ Megatron, whose given name was Corey McGriff, was 32.

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WNYC News

City Marks Closure of Fresh Kills Amid Controversy

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

City officials planted five trees at the former Fresh Kills landfill on Staten Island, to mark the anniversary of its closure. While the last barge of garbage was delivered ten years ago today, Staten Island Borough President Jim Molinaro was not celebrating. He took the city and state to task for letting the landfill operate for 54 years.

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It's A Free Country ®

What To Watch For In The Census: Borough-by-Borough

Thursday, March 03, 2011

When you look at Queens Village, you have a couple square blocks in which there are 400 residents from Central and South America; 300 from south Asia; 300 from southeast Asia; almost 200 from eastern Europe; more than 100 from the Caribbean; more than 100 from east Asia; as well as 500 born in the United States. Now that is diversity, and you don’t see that in many places in the world.

-- Sam Roberts of the New York Times, on the Brian Lehrer Show

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WNYC News

Air Is Safe at School Where PCBs Were Found, Says City

Friday, January 14, 2011

The air is now safe at a Staten Island elementary school where PCBs had leaked from lighting fixtures, according to the city.

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WNYC News

Parents Keep Kids Home from Staten Island School

Monday, January 10, 2011

Three-quarters of the students at a Staten Island school stayed home on Monday after toxic PCBs were found in two classrooms. The PCBs apparently came from flourescent lightbulbs.

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Transportation Nation

TN Moving Stories: the Vehicle Saturation Point, Are Transit Advocates in SF Too White, and is 2011 the Year of the Swagger Wagon?

Wednesday, January 05, 2011

The Takeaway asks: is 2011 the year of the minivan? Toyota hopes so, and is reimagining the Sienna as a "swagger wagon." The below ad captures a white nuclear middle-class family, in all its gangsta glory:

Listen to the conversation (and find out if the Takeaway's guests would be caught dead in a minivan) below:

Have we reached the vehicle saturation point? A study of eight industrialized countries (not including China!) says passenger travel appears to have peaked in 2003. (Wired)

Could the future makeover of the Bayonne Bridge mean transit connections from Staten Island to New Jersey? It's not being ruled out. (Staten Island Live)

A bill that's being introduced in the Washington state legislature would mandate more distance on the road between bikers and cars. (Seattle Post Intelligencer)

San Francisco's city supervisors take the opportunity to wonder, while voting on a nomination to the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency Board, if transit advocates are too white (Bay Citizen). Meanwhile, San Francisco is looking to increase the number of parking citations it writes to "help close a projected $21 million deficit in the $775 million operating budget for the current fiscal year that ends June 30." (San Francisco Chronicle)

DC's Metro is having trouble selling its new bag search policy to the public. (Washington Post)

24 hours of flight, time-lapsed. Doesn't it look like bees swarming?

Follow Transportation Nation on Twitter.

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Transportation Nation

TN Moving Stories: New Yorkers Face Long Commutes, More DC Residents Are Taking Public Transit, And How To Modernize Air Traffic Control

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Census data, commuter edition: More DC residents are using abandoning their cars and taking public transit to work. "Only New Yorkers take the subway to work more than Washingtonians do." (Washington Post)

Meanwhile, four of New York City's five boroughs logged the nation's longest average commute times to work (New York Post).  The country's worst commute continues to belong to Staten Island, where residents spend 42.5 minutes each way traveling to work (Staten Island Live).  But remember, New Yorkers --commutes cost less in NYC.

The blog Ride The City published data about more than 600,000 NYC bike rides planned on their site since April 2009. Median ride length: a little over 4 miles. And: 85% of all rides started or ended in just 7% of census blocks.

In other news:  The tax cut -- with its attendant transit benefit -- passes the Senate. Next stop: the House. (New York Times)

New York City has launched a new pilot program that will allow some disabled Access-A-Ride customers to take taxis instead. (WNYC)

Amtrak passengers can now bring unloaded guns on some trains. All aboard! (NPR)

A federal task force has some ideas about how to modernize air traffic control -- and ensure transparency in pricing. (Wall Street Journal)

Richard Florida digs into neighborhood walkability--which he writes is "a magnet for attracting and retaining the highly innovative businesses and highly skilled people that drive economic growth, raising housing values and generating higher incomes."  (The Atlantic)

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Transportation Nation

TN Moving Stories: Miami-Dade Transit Tries To Figure Out Fed $ Freeze, and Queensboro Bridge To Be Renamed for Koch

Wednesday, December 08, 2010

Why did the federal government freeze funding to Miami-Dade Transit? Bad accounting practices--or fraud? (Miami Herald)

Two major New York transportation structures are to be renamed. So: to get from lower Manhattan to Brooklyn, take the Carey Tunnel; from Manhattan to Queens, take the Koch Bridge. The former mayor is delighted by the renaming of the Queensboro. “It’s not soaring, beautiful, handsome, like the George Washington or the Verrazano,” he said. “It’s rugged, it’s hard working — and that’s me.” (New York Times)

Ford begins shipping the Transit Connect, the first all-electric commercial van. (Detroit News)

Does Toronto Mayor Ford need the approval of city council to scrap Transit City? He says no; the council says not so fast. (Toronto Star)

Fed up by the lack of live transit data from the NYC MTA? Someone put together a crowdsourcing app that live-tracks trains. (Wired)

Public transportation workers strike in Athens to protest the Greek government's austerity measures. (MarketWatch)

What transit options are on the table for Staten Islanders, who suffer some of the longest commutes in the country?  Possibly resurrecting the North Shore Rail Line. (NY1)

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Transportation Nation

TN Moving Stories: Amtrak No Longer Interested in ARC Tunnel, and Metro-North Now Nation's Busiest Commuter Rail Line

Friday, November 12, 2010

Amtrak breaks off talks with NJ Transit, says it's done talking about reviving the ARC tunnel. "We are no longer interested in this project," a spokesperson for the national rail agency said. "There were exploratory talks going on with NJ Transit. The talks have stopped. … That was commuter rail, and we are interested in intercity rail projects." (The Record)

NJ Gov Christie says his wife didn't like the ARC tunnel either. (The Record via NY Post)

Minneapolis's Northstar light rail line, which opened a year ago, is carrying 5% less passengers than anticipated.  Reasons? Maybe the economy...and low gas prices. Plans for an extension have been shelved. (St. Cloud Times)

General Electric is buying 25,000 electric cars--including 12,000 Chevy Volts. (Smart Planet)

The Florida Times-Union writes: "No one seems to know what Gov.-elect Rick Scott hopes to accomplish when it comes to roads and passenger rail."

Maine's highway fund is facing a potential shortfall of $720 million in the next two-year budget cycle. Interesting:  "The highway budget is funded for the most part by motor fuel taxes, which have grown static due to increasingly efficient vehicles." (Business Week)

The MTA is telling about half of Staten Island's Access-A-Ride customers to take a bus instead. (Staten Island Live)

America has a new busiest commuter rail line: In September, ridership on Metro-North surpassed the Long Island Rail Road's for the first time ever. (WSJ)

There's a booming resale market for the little three-wheeled vehicles most urban police departments use to look for parking violations.  Plus, it's just fun driving around terrifying people who think you're going to ticket them. (WSJ)

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WNYC News

Paper Power: Why Campaign Mailers Still Thrive in the Digital Age

Thursday, October 28, 2010

No other medium has the power to put a candidate’s image and message into voters’ hands like a campaign mailer, even if the voter walks the flyer straight to the recycle bin. And mail is especially useful in New York City, where a 30-second TV ad can cost millions to produce and air.

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Transportation Nation

TN Moving Stories: Bike Commuting on Rise, NJ Road Work Suspended Again, and Update on ARC

Wednesday, October 06, 2010

Christie expected to pull the plug on ARC (WNYC) (Marketplace). Meanwhile, NJ transportation officials suspended about 100 early-stage road and rail projects yesterday. (AP via ABC news)

The number of people commuting by bike is on the rise. Slowly -- but steadily. (Wired)

Ray LaHood got an earful from Staten Islanders yesterday, who "face the longest commute in the entire country." (NY1)

A proposed bike lane drew more crowds at a Vancouver city council meeting than a discussion of a future transit link. (The Province)

Albany grapples with a parking plan, debates a "system that uses market forces and incentives -- rather than 'rationing and command and control.'"  (Times Union)

School bus driver training varies "wildly" from district to district in Georgia. (Atlanta Journal-Constitution)

Fill That Hole! was once just a public works rallying cry. Now it's an iPhone app in London. (Good)

The New York Times reviews the new musical "In Transit," which chronicles subway life: "Some will scoff at those searching for enlightenment in the crowded underground world. Yet that wide-eyed wonder may remind others of why they came to the city in the first place."

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Features

New York Philharmonic Uses Staten Island Junk for 'Kraft'

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Composer Magnus Linberg and members of the New York Philharmonic headed out to Edkins Auto Sales and Salvage on Staten Island to find scrap metal for the New York premiere of "Kraft." The unlikely group searched piles of crushed cars, hills of discarded tires and heaps of disembodied axles, gas tanks and bumpers for something that would create a "sound world" which is rarely heard in classical music.

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WNYC News

Staten Island DA Asks Voters for Big Promotion

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Dan Donovan is asking voters for a major promotion. The Staten Island native and social conservative wants to be the state's top law enforcement officer. He's the GOP nominee for Attorney General and he's running on his record as District Attorney.

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WNYC News

Staten Island 9/11 Memorial Not Vandalized After All

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Staten Island Borough President James Molinaro has issued an apology to the families of 9/11 victims -- after officials mistakenly believed a local memorial had been vandalized.

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