TEXT OF STORY
Doug Krizner: The term “in a New York second” rarely applies to driving in Midtown. So last Spring, Big Apple Mayor Michael Bloomberg introduced a plan to reduce traffic: charge a weekday fee to drive in Manhattan below 86th Street.
Well, this quickly divided New Yorkers. Since then, a state-appointed commission has been reviewing alternatives. As Ashley Milne-Tyte reports, a final recommendation comes this week.
Ashley Milne-Tyte: Many commuters and business owners were furious at the idea of paying to enter Manhattan below 86th Street.
Allison de Cerreno directs NYU’s Rudin Center for Transportation Policy and Management. She says the commission has been busy.
Allison de Cerreno: They’ve been looking at everything practically under the sun, from license plate rationing, to off-peak deliveries, to changes in parking pricing, to tolling the east river bridges.
She says the most likely plan will still involve drivers paying up in certain areas. But she says there’s a reason for that.
de Cerreno: We have millions of dollars on the table right now from the United States Department of Transportation. And if we don’t come up with a plan that meets their criteria, we’re gonna lose the money.
Three hundred and fifty-four million dollars, to be exact. To receive the cash, the government says New York has to charge drivers and spend the proceeds on public transportation.
In New York, I’m Ashley Milne-Tyte for Marketplace.
We’re here to help you navigate this changed world and economy.
Our mission at Marketplace is to raise the economic intelligence of the country. It’s a tough task, but it’s never been more important.
In the past year, we’ve seen record unemployment, stimulus bills, and reddit users influencing the stock market. Marketplace helps you understand it all, will fact-based, approachable, and unbiased reporting.
Generous support from listeners and readers is what powers our nonprofit news—and your donation today will help provide this essential service. For just $5/month, you can sustain independent journalism that keeps you and thousands of others informed.