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BrooklynBus

What Really Causes Traffic Congestion

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SBS on Woodhaven is a sort of chicken and egg problem with the whole "better mass transit doesn't exist". It's not perfect, but it's better. Besides, have you actually used an SBS route? You seem to take a harsh view on it, so I'd just like to know.

 

It's not that cars are inherently bad - but they are overwhelmingly over-represented in today's transportation system, largely because of land-use and zoning over the years. It may seem like there is a war on cars, but in terms of lane-miles, buses, bikes, and pedestrians lose out overwhelmingly, especially in overcrowded areas of the city. Plus, in the outer boroughs, a lot of roads are wider than they should be, and NYPD won't do due diligence when it comes to speeding, so you see roads with lots of cars going above 40 or even 50 mph (which was the case at Prospect Park West pre-bike lane). Narrowing the road reduces speeding, and if it improves the local transportation mix, that's an added bonus. Contrary to popular belief, the purpose of the transportation system is not just to get the most amount of people from A to B in a given amount of time. Road safety is also an issue that must be properly addressed.

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A better alternative is just to reactivate the Rockaway Beach Branch.

 

It really helps (MTA) realize that when you post this in about every thread that can somehow hook into RBB.

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I agree with this post.  Most people here just blame cars when it's not entirely at fault.

 

The no parking during mid-day on some avenues seems like a great idea on some Brooklyn Avenues I know of.

 

Eliminating a full lane for bike lanes isn't helping with traffic at all either, so I hated that, though I bike sometimes and do wish for some space, but an entire lane is too much.

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I don't think subways have to be the answer because many subways are already at capacity and are strained as it is.  We need to use our waterways more and provide more ferry service where possible, have express bus service run earlier and/or later in some areas not served by subways and expand commuter rail as well.  MetroNorth was packed this morning and what was scary is that this is supposed to be a time of the year when less people are traveling on MetroNorth.   Instead of expanding ferry service, we instead keep yelling that it's too expensive which is just foolish. Ferry service has done nicely in the Brooklyn esp. in Williamsburg and Greenpoint and I hope that they keep the ferry service in the Rockaways as well that the city started shortly after Hurricane Sandy.  Not everyone is in love with the subway and let's face it many people stay in their cars precisely for that reason, whether some people like to admit that or not.  You give a person the option to take ferry service and I think you'd get some people out of their cars. 

 

The other issue I see constantly is tons of double parking.  Too many damn commercial vehicles making their deliveries. Why can't these trucks make deliveries late at night when there is less traffic?  They also need to get tough with yellow cabs because they often clog up the streets blocking traffic just because they're so busy trying to get a fare.

 

You have a lot of folks here that can afford more expensive transportation and the city should be pushing that, particularly those who like driving because those are people that you want to draw out of their cars.  The subways don't need to be marketed because people will use them regardless because they need them.

Edited by Via Garibaldi 8
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I don't think subways have to be the answer because many subways are already at capacity and are strained as it is.  We need to use our waterways more and provide more ferry service where possible, have express bus service run earlier and/or later in some areas not served by subways and expand commuter rail as well.  MetroNorth was packed this morning and what was scary is that this is supposed to be a time of the year when less people are traveling on MetroNorth.   Instead of expanding ferry service, we instead keep yelling that it's too expensive which is just foolish. Ferry service has done nicely in the Brooklyn esp. in Williamsburg and Greenpoint and I hope that they keep the ferry service in the Rockaways as well that the city started shortly after Hurricane Sandy.  Not everyone is in love with the subway and let's face it many people stay in their cars precisely for that reason, whether some people like to admit that or not.  You give a person the option to take ferry service and I think you'd get some people out of their cars. 

 

The other issue I see constantly is tons of double parking.  Too many damn commercial vehicles making their deliveries. Why can't these trucks make deliveries late at night when there is less traffic?  They also need to get tough with yellow cabs because they often clog up the streets blocking traffic just because they're so busy trying to get a fare.

 

You have a lot of folks here that can afford more expensive transportation and the city should be pushing that, particularly those who like driving because those are people that you want to draw out of their cars.  The subways don't need to be marketed because people will use them regardless because they need them.

 

It would sound good except Woodhaven Boulevard is nowhere near the water. Plus ferry service is limited to coastal communities only. The only alternative for inland communities is to build either A) Subway Lines B) Bus Rapid Transit or C) Light Rail.

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It would sound good except Woodhaven Boulevard is nowhere near the water. Plus ferry service is limited to coastal communities only. The only alternative for inland communities is to build either A) Subway Lines B) Bus Rapid Transit or C) Light Rail.

Who is talking about Woodhaven Blvd?? I'm talking about in general.

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SBS on Woodhaven is a sort of chicken and egg problem with the whole "better mass transit doesn't exist". It's not perfect, but it's better. Besides, have you actually used an SBS route? You seem to take a harsh view on it, so I'd just like to know.

 

Agreed about SBS being better but not perfect.

 

It's not that cars are inherently bad - but they are overwhelmingly over-represented in today's transportation system, largely because of land-use and zoning over the years. It may seem like there is a war on cars, but in terms of lane-miles, buses, bikes, and pedestrians lose out overwhelmingly, especially in overcrowded areas of the city. Plus, in the outer boroughs, a lot of roads are wider than they should be, and NYPD won't do due diligence when it comes to speeding, so you see roads with lots of cars going above 40 or even 50 mph (which was the case at Prospect Park West pre-bike lane). Narrowing the road reduces speeding, and if it improves the local transportation mix, that's an added bonus. Contrary to popular belief, the purpose of the transportation system is not just to get the most amount of people from A to B in a given amount of time. Road safety is also an issue that must be properly addressed.

 

Amen!

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The other issue I see constantly is tons of double parking.  Too many damn commercial vehicles making their deliveries. Why can't these trucks make deliveries late at night when there is less traffic?  They also need to get tough with yellow cabs because they often clog up the streets blocking traffic just because they're so busy trying to get a fare.

 

A lot of complications involved if all these trucking companies have to change their schedules to make sure they make deliveries during overnight hours only in our city.

 

None of what I quoted will change unless the citizenry wakes up and sees the writing on the wall. Not that I expect that to ever happen.

Edited by BrooklynIRT

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Another problem is that there is not enough curb space for deliveries so you have trucks double parking for up to three hours as a single person unloads te entire truck. That's what happens on Brigton Beach Avenue. Stores don't want to pay someone to accept overnight deliveries so it is not done.

 

The Fulton Mall took 17 years of planning. All deliveries were up posed to be done overnight. Buses were supposed to fly by. But when it opened the merchants insisted on daytime deliveries. So instead of the buses fighting with cars, now they fight with delivery trucks so although there are no cars, bus travel is still slow.

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Lol.... You're basically saying everyone & everything is to blame for traffic congestion.....

 

A balanced transportation system is the answer for those that wish to consider public transportation.... The notion of car-free roads I find to be a very extremist point of view (which I'll get to, below)...... With that said, this article to me has this undertone that there are a lot of cars (eventually leading up to the issue of traffic congestion) on the road because public transportation options are lacking and/or inadequate.... Although the lot of us on these transit forums are public transportation advocates, there are pro-car, anti-public transportation people out there too.... These are the folks that want nothing to do with public transportation, no matter what the hell is done regarding improvements of buses and/or rail system(s).....

 

I'm most certainly not an MTA apologist, but I don't see how you can (logically) blame the MTA that there's traffic congestion - when you have as many pro-car, anti-public transportation people out here driving on our roads.... The love for the almighty personal vehicle will never cease to exist because for one, it exemplifies STATUS...... There is not a single thing the MTA can do to eradicate that !

 

Also, the people out here commuting via bike, of course they're gonna paint the picture that the automobile is the "villain" (and vice versa) - neither motorist or bicyclist have a strong "respect" for one another on the roads....

 

Speaking of which, the quotes of yours making the points:

- "Just get rid of all the cars, encourage the use of bikes by building more bike lanes, and improve mass transit, and all our congestion problems will be solved."

- "Also, all streets should have their traffic lanes reduced with the addition of bike lanes, wider sidewalks and the planting of trees in the center of the street."

.....are (embellished) environmentalist arguments.....

 

And finally, as for this quote:

- "Yet we have those who believe that in the absence of extending subway lines or reactivating unused rights-of way, which many believe are cost prohibitive, we must greatly expand our Select Bus Service (SBS) network into any place in which we once wanted to build a subway."

Yeah, the MTA. ....

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Another problem is that there is not enough curb space for deliveries so you have trucks double parking for up to three hours as a single person unloads te entire truck. That's what happens on Brigton Beach Avenue. Stores don't want to pay someone to accept overnight deliveries so it is not done.

 

The Fulton Mall took 17 years of planning. All deliveries were up posed to be done overnight. Buses were supposed to fly by. But when it opened the merchants insisted on daytime deliveries. So instead of the buses fighting with cars, now they fight with delivery trucks so although there are no cars, bus travel is still slow.

I think these delivery trucks are a HUGE problem.  I'd say they're the main reason for traffic congestion. They literally clog up 5th Avenue and esp. Lexington on another level.  They also need to do something with the FedEx and UPS trucks... On Lexington esp. we spent SO much time trying to weave around delivery trucks and yellow taxis that it's ridiculous.  These people just double park any old way and have no problem blocking traffic.  They should be ticketed if they don't make enough of an effort to keep traffic flowing.

 

A lot of complications involved if all these trucking companies have to change their schedules to make sure they make deliveries during overnight hours only in our city.

 

None of what I quoted will change unless the citizenry wakes up and sees the writing on the wall. Not that I expect that to ever happen.

Well too bad. It needs to be done. I already see a few businesses getting deliveries overnight. Some of them have employees there and some don't.

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The other problem is that DOT hasn't designated specific loading zones and times for delivery operations, such as in the early mornings or evenings. The only places they have done this is (surprise!) where bike lanes or bus lanes have been installed, to mitigate the double parking effect (or attempt to).

 

If DOT was more proactive about loading zones, then this wouldn't be such an issue.

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And people crossing the road is to blame?  How?

 

I believe he means people crossing when they are not suppose to or crossing where there is no crosswalks and such. (ie jay-walking)

 

A big example would be around 8 Av Brooklyn area where it most cases it's clearly not a green/walk light for the people but they cross anyway and I hate that whenever I drive along the area.

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]

 

SBS on Woodhaven is a sort of chicken and egg problem with the whole "better mass transit doesn't exist". It's not perfect, but it's better. Besides, have you actually used an SBS route? You seem to take a harsh view on it, so I'd just like to know.

 

Agreed about SBS being better but not perfect.

 

It's not that cars are inherently bad - but they are overwhelmingly over-represented in today's transportation system, largely because of land-use and zoning over the years. It may seem like there is a war on cars, but in terms of lane-miles, buses, bikes, and pedestrians lose out overwhelmingly, especially in overcrowded areas of the city. Plus, in the outer boroughs, a lot of roads are wider than they should be, and NYPD won't do due diligence when it comes to speeding, so you see roads with lots of cars going above 40 or even 50 mph (which was the case at Prospect Park West pre-bike lane). Narrowing the road reduces speeding, and if it improves the local transportation mix, that's an added bonus. Contrary to popular belief, the purpose of the transportation system is not just to get the most amount of people from A to B in a given amount of time. Road safety is also an issue that must be properly addressed.

 

Amen!

 

I only used an SBS route once, the S79, when I went to pick up my new car. It didn't save me any time because I had to either wait 15 minutes to change for the S78 or walk a half mile to the car dealer. I chose to walk. I'm not saying that no one saves time, only that I didnt save any.

 

The reason drivers were speeding on Prospect Park West is that the signals were timed to go at 35 mph to catch the green lights although the speed limit was 30. If they changed the timing fewer cars woud have been speeding. It wasn't necessary to narrow the roadway to reduce speeding which also increases congestion and costs people time. The problem with making such changes is that only the people living in the neighborhood are consulted, not the people using the roadway who are traveling through who have just as much right to be heard because their taxes also pay for the upkeep of the street.

Edited by BrooklynBus

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Lol.... You're basically saying everyone & everything is to blame for traffic congestion.....

 

A balanced transportation system is the answer for those that wish to consider public transportation.... The notion of car-free roads I find to be a very extremist point of view (which I'll get to, below)...... With that said, this article to me has this undertone that there are a lot of cars (eventually leading up to the issue of traffic congestion) on the road because public transportation options are lacking and/or inadequate.... Although the lot of us on these transit forums are public transportation advocates, there are pro-car, anti-public transportation people out there too.... These are the folks that want nothing to do with public transportation, no matter what the hell is done regarding improvements of buses and/or rail system(s).....

 

I'm most certainly not an MTA apologist, but I don't see how you can (logically) blame the MTA that there's traffic congestion - when you have as many pro-car, anti-public transportation people out here driving on our roads.... The love for the almighty personal vehicle will never cease to exist because for one, it exemplifies STATUS...... There is not a single thing the MTA can do to eradicate that !

 

Also, the people out here commuting via bike, of course they're gonna paint the picture that the automobile is the "villain" (and vice versa) - neither motorist or bicyclist have a strong "respect" for one another on the roads....

 

Speaking of which, the quotes of yours making the points:

- "Just get rid of all the cars, encourage the use of bikes by building more bike lanes, and improve mass transit, and all our congestion problems will be solved."

- "Also, all streets should have their traffic lanes reduced with the addition of bike lanes, wider sidewalks and the planting of trees in the center of the street."

.....are (embellished) environmentalist arguments.....

 

And finally, as for this quote:

- "Yet we have those who believe that in the absence of extending subway lines or reactivating unused rights-of way, which many believe are cost prohibitive, we must greatly expand our Select Bus Service (SBS) network into any place in which we once wanted to build a subway."

Yeah, the MTA. ....

Yes, many are to blame. The drivers who absolutely refuse to even consider mass transit, delivery trucks, the MTA for not providing enough service during off hours. They need to return to their old subway service guidelines and ensure trains are never overcrowded at 10 PM at night for example and fix routing problems and the fare impediment for using a third bus. And of course DOT is to blame also and even pedestrians. (see below.)

 

 

I think these delivery trucks are a HUGE problem.  I'd say they're the main reason for traffic congestion. They literally clog up 5th Avenue and esp. Lexington on another level.  They also need to do something with the FedEx and UPS trucks... On Lexington esp. we spent SO much time trying to weave around delivery trucks and yellow taxis that it's ridiculous.  These people just double park any old way and have no problem blocking traffic.  They should be ticketed if they don't make enough of an effort to keep traffic flowing.

 

 

Well too bad. It needs to be done. I already see a few businesses getting deliveries overnight. Some of them have employees there and some don't.

I agree that we need nighttime deliveries. It is required on the major shopping street in Tel Aviv. We need to make it a requirement here to where needed.

 

 

And people crossing the road is to blame?  How?

If you have tried to make a right turn in Manhattan and even on some streets in Brooklyn, there are so many people crossing the street, that they take up the entire green cycle so only one car gets to make a right turn and he has to do it on the red signal. So if three cars need to make a right, you must wait for three cycles or three minutes just to make the turn. The queue can even increase to six or eight cars. That's not to say that pedestrians don't have the right to cross the street. Only that high pedestrian volumes can contribute to traffic congestion. I was not referring to people illegally crossing the street.

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Yes, many are to blame. The drivers who absolutely refuse to even consider mass transit, delivery trucks, the MTA for not providing enough service during off hours. They need to return to their old subway service guidelines and ensure trains are never overcrowded at 10 PM at night for example and fix routing problems and the fare impediment for using a third bus. And of course DOT is to blame also and even pedestrians. (see below.)

 

 

 

I agree that we need nighttime deliveries. It is required on the major shopping street in Tel Aviv. We need to make it a requirement here to where needed.

 

 

 

If you have tried to make a right turn in Manhattan and even on some streets in Brooklyn, there are so many people crossing the street, that they take up the entire green cycle so only one car gets to make a right turn and he has to do it on the red signal. So if three cars need to make a right, you must wait for three cycles or three minutes just to make the turn. The queue can even increase to six or eight cars. That's not to say that pedestrians don't have the right to cross the street. Only that high pedestrian volumes can contribute to traffic congestion. I was not referring to people illegally crossing the street.

In the city, the pedestrian is king, so even if they don't have the right away, they will take it unless they're almost run over and even then they may not move.  It's amazing how people try to use every ounce of space when they already have plenty of it.  You can have a huge sidewalk and you will see people walking in such a way that they take up 75% of it making it impossible for anyone to pass. This is exactly what they do in the streets to.  

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@Via: Yeah, people just walk wherever they wanna walk. Also happens here. Even with big signs and clear tiling/coloring marking a bike lane, they still walk on it like they just don't care. When I'm bicycling, I always wait till I'm right behind 'em and then at the last moment ring my bell. Scares the hell out of 'em but that's their own fault.

 

Oh yeah, and let's not talk about the jaywalkers. Happens sometimes here, but it mostly happens in Nassau County. At least, that's what I learned from Long Islanders after that NICE accident in Hempstead.

 

@BrooklynBus: Is the (MTA) really to blame here? Less service or not, the TPH on most lines is quite high.

Edited by Vistausss
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@BrooklynBus: Is the (MTA) really to blame here? Less service or not, the TPH on most lines is quite high.

They are to blame when they don't address problems tat need to be addressed like routing deficiencies, refusing to consider suggestions from the public and looking for excuses to dismiss those suggestions. Their inconsistency of logic is unbelievable. They are also at fault for not providing more service when additional service is possible and needed. Why should some trains be overcrowded at 10PM when everyone should get a seat?

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They are to blame when they don't address problems tat need to be addressed like routing deficiencies, refusing to consider suggestions from the public and looking for excuses to dismiss those suggestions. Their inconsistency of logic is unbelievable. They are also at fault for not providing more service when additional service is possible and needed. Why should some trains be overcrowded at 10PM when everyone should get a seat?

Not just trains... Buses too...

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