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June 28, 2006

Transportation changes: are congestion pricing, East River tolls on the agenda?

Atlantic Yards Report

Norman Oder spends an evening at a transportation forum to learn more about the City's plans (or lack thereof) to combat the Atlantic Yards bugaboo, TRAFFIC.

One huge challenge for the Atlantic Yards project--or any other major development at the crossroads of Atlantic, Flatbush, and Fourth avenues--involves transportation, and the solution involves citywide issues, not merely project-related fixes. That's why the decision by the Empire State Development Corporation to exclude the East River crossings from the Final Scope of Analysis--the prelude to a Draft Environmental Impact Statement for the Atlantic Yards project--was so shortsighted, especially since a good chunk of Nets fans are expected to come from New Jersey.
But the issue goes beyond arena attendance, a transportation consultant Brian Ketcham has stressed, since most of the new traffic would be generated by new residents. Markowitz remains optimistic, according to the Post, that Forest City Ratner will mitigate the impact of the project, such as by providing incentives for people visiting the arena to use mass transit.

The problem is much bigger than the Atlantic Yards project, and whatever changes are proposed by the developer will have to be seen in context of some citywide planning issues. After all, Also, 40 percent of the traffic in Downtown Brooklyn is going into Manhattan, according to traffic consultant Bruce Schaller, and that could be cut if the city implements some systemic changes.


Posted by lumi at June 28, 2006 7:51 AM