Thursday, December 31, 2015

Tri State Transportation Campaign Continuing Pretense

TSTC Continues to Pretend to Support Comprehensive Transport Including Rail

Can Tappan Zee Bridge Replacement Reverse Legacy of the 60-Year-Old Span?


The Tappan Zee Bridge shaped the region in a car-dependent fashion. If the bus system recommended by the Governor’s Mass Transit Task Force is fully implemented, the New NY Bridge could help to re-shape the region with less emphasis on the automobile. In addition to simply providing an alternative to driving, exclusive bus lanes, along with transit oriented, mixed-used development near transit can transform the future of the Hudson Valley into one that is more equitable, more environmentally friendly and more sustainable.

They should write "automobile" dependent rather than car dependent, as trains include train cars.

Nonetheless the article pretends that groups as TSTC have consistently lobbied for rail when in actuality they threw in the towel with the change in planning cir 2012.

I made this comment, which simply disappears:
Let us not forget how groups as TSTC threw in the towel on comprehensive rail capacity expansion regarding the new TPZ Bridge project, and why:

 Other links regarding this:

This was ignored by TSTC and the other supposedly 'progressive' liberal environmentally oriented groups involved with influencing transportation policy.



Monday, October 26, 2015

MTA Money Siphoning Over-Looked

From the Daily News:

Drivers in New York and New Jersey pay the heftiest price for their commutes — accounting for almost one-third of all tolls collected across the U.S., a new report says.

The report, which was released by the International Bridges, Tunnels and Turnpike Association, indicated that drivers in the two states forked over an astounding $4 billion of the $13 billion in tolls accrued across the country.

“The primary reason (for New York and New Jersey drivers paying the highest tolls) would be the concentration in the region of bridges and tunnels connecting the greater New York metro area,” said Neil Gray, director of government affairs at IBTTA.

“The facilities have been in place for a long time, they were very expensive to build, they are expensive to maintain and they are tremendously expensive to replace.”

Gray added that the greater New York metro area has a very high concentration of commuters, which is likely to account for the costliness.

The report:

Some comments received:

Camel bladder said... 
At least 2/3 of the bridge and tunnel tolls we pay go to direct subsidies for the MTA buses and subways. I find it amazing that these pointy headed scumbags that produced this report could leave out key information like this. This uncontrolled subsidy to the MTA is endless. There are taxes everywhere that we all pay to cover the bloated MTA. Just look at your telephone bill, there is a downstate MTA tax in every phone bill. Not to mention how much of our federal tax dollars get dumped into the MTA shithole.
Disgusted Diva said... 
The MTA is corrupt and bloated. It should be investigated and reorganized. Its officials have no apparent accountability at present. The MTA members should be term limited and publicly vetted, and its books should be accessible. Our federal representatives should be more proactive in getting funding for our capital needs and projects, including funding the MTA.
Time to pay back the Westway funds!

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Jesuitical Psuedo Environmentalism - 'Fighting Westway' William Buzbee Georgetown University Law Center

to stop a tunneled highway that would have had portal pollution hot spots highlighting the need for cleaner automobile technoligies

I was one of the lawyers who represented the New York State DOT in this case. Mr. Buzbee reached out to our team a grand total of once while researching and writing this tome. His bias in favor of the plaintiffs is obvious, as is his lack of understanding of all of the issues. In short, the book is neither honest nor accurate, and I reject it as the sort of drivel that only encourages pseudo-environmentalists to litigate in order to block progress. - Bruce Margolius

totally misrepresents the cost issues regarding the relative complexities of the Boston CAT project and Westway.

brushes aside considerations of engineering

feeds the myth of highways vs transit rather than transportation infrastructure versus things as the ruinous and wasteful drug war.

In his new book Fighting Westway: Environmental Law, Citizen Activism and the Regulatory War that Transformed New York City (Cornell University Press, 2014), Georgetown University Law Center Professor William W. Buzbee provides a history of one of environmental law’s most epic and renowned battles.

Buzbee uses archival documents and interviews with stakeholders to dissect the legal, environmental and political battles over Westway, the most expensive federally financed highway of its day and a project that would have involved massive landfilling in the Hudson River. It was a struggle that lasted 14 years, involving direct citizen protests and activism, Congress, presidents, agencies and several court trials. It pitted senators, mayors and the editorial boards of the New York Times and Daily News against scientists, federal agency staff and citizen activists and their lawyers. Buzbee uses the Westway battles to illuminate the strategies and elements of high stakes regulatory wars. Although many books have been written about the law, few illuminate the strategies and choices at play in common but complex high stakes regulatory conflicts that often involve society’s most fundamental political choices.

“Westway’s defeat remains shocking to its champions, especially considering the power of its supporters,” Buzbee writes. Although Westway’s defeat has often been described as an anti-democratic outcome over a mere procedural snafu, or lacking merit under the law, Buzbee reveals that Westway’s battles were over high stakes. The project’s defeat was not due to “some antidemocratic fluke,” he says, but to an effective combination of citizen activism, a highway versus mass transit choice, scientific input by expert regulators, environmentally protective choices in the law and judicial impartiality. While Buzbee surveys the entire history of the project, he focuses most of his attention on the legal and regulatory battles at its endgame, from 1982 to 1985.

“The dramatic story of the battle over Westway serves as a masterful case study of how today’s regulatory wars are waged across the United States,” says Richard Briffault, Joseph P. Chamberlain Professor of Legislation at Columbia University Law School.

And John H. Adams, founding director of the Natural Resources Defense Council, says: “Finally! The first thorough, truthful account of one of the great environmental battles of the twentieth century!”

Oh really?

The book spouts anti Westway ideas - doing so with full acceptance and utterly uncricticaly.


cites Lower Manhattan Expressway as precedent, yet disegards major differences between projects namely Westway's absence of the problems that politically plauged LOMAX.

- the former would have displaced numerous buildings
- would have been largely elevated or an open trench

Westway would have displaced non, asides from some piers that would be demolished anyway
Westway was primarily in a tunnel encasing noise and pollution


cites Westway opponents scoffing at Westway benefits regarding development

- ignored reality of greater property values when major road corridor is buried ig 96th street where the rr goes underground

- ignored the extra development of the landfill new development

- ignored added neighborhoods and property taxes- perpetual benefits

- ignored reconnecting Manhattan to waterfront via placing main stream of vehicular traffic in tunnel.

- ignored reality that Westway would replace existing freeway link with antiquated design connecting existing freeway segments


- ignored context of historically expanding landfill and that the concentration owed to a sewer outlet

- thus Westway would merely pushed fish a few hundred feet

- ignored efforts elsewhere to mitigate via providing alternative hatcheries in area.

Friday, August 28, 2015

The Case FOR Below Ground Level Urban Freeways

by Sandy Smith, for a cut and cover Roosevelt Boulevard Expressway

A Case For An Urban Expressway

October 19, 2012 |  by  |  Soapbox  |  , , , , , ,

Seoul before and after the removal of a central highway and the restoration of the Cheonggyecheon River | Image: Seoul Metropolitan Government
[DW note- this was a wasted opportunity: 
it should have included a box tunnel freeway tunnel beneath]

The movement to eliminate urban freeways has been gathering steam and a number of high-profile supporters, and understandably so. It’s been demonstrated on numerous occasions that freeways and cities don’t play well together, or at least not as well as either freeway advocates or the municipal officials who welcomed their arrival in the 1950s anticipated. Next American City has showcased several examples where removing urban freeways has stimulated the revitalization of urban areas in places like San Francisco and Portland, and earlier this year it sponsored a forum, “Reimagining Urban Highways,” at the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University in which a host of urban officials discussed the positive forces unleashed when urban freeways were removed.

There’s a powerful case to be made for this argument. Urban freeways disfigure large swaths of land, and high-speed car access to urban centers undercuts the ability of mass transit–a more density-friendly form of transportation–to serve them effectively. Society Hill residents fought furiously to have Interstate 95 buried through Center City in the 1960s, correctly seeing the proposed elevated highway as cutting the city off from its waterfront. More recently, Diana Lind, the editor of Next American City, spearheaded a dialogue about the complete removal of I-95 through forums like the one in February.

But just as enthusiasm for urban freeways was overdone, so may be enthusiasm for their removal. Unless we eliminate cars entirely–an unlikely proposition–there will need to be provisions to handle them, sometimes in large numbers, in our cities.

While I agree with Jane Jacobs that we should pursue “the attrition of cars by cities,” “attrition” falls well short of elimination. And furthermore, there are places where adding rather than removing a freeway makes an urban environment more pedestrian-friendly. To understand why, let’s go back to the future and up to the part of town I now call home.

Vine Street, looking east from 15th Street, 1951. From the Philadelphia City Archives via

The photo above shows Vine Street after it was widened to 10 lanes east of 15th Street in 1951. While the road is relatively free of traffic in this picture, it would not remain so for long: by the 1970s, it hummed with traffic most of the day, and crossing it on foot was at best an unpleasant experience.
Fast-forward to today, after Vine Street’s center lanes were buried in a trench that extended the Vine Street Expressway across Center City. Those buried lanes took most of the traffic with them, and now, pedestrians can cross Vine Street with relative ease and safety at all but the worst congested periods.

As with Vine Street, so with Roosevelt Boulevard, the central artery of Northeast Philadelphia. A 1950s reconstruction project reconfigured that street as well, turning it into a 12-lane, double-divided boulevard much like Vine Street downtown. The improvements also turned it into a near-expressway, and drivers have treated it as such ever since, to the detriment of anyone who tries to cross it.
The recent installation of pedestrian crosswalk signals at several points along the street indicates that the city understands the hazards of crossing the Boulevard. But the real path to eliminating the hazard lies in doing to the Boulevard what the state did with Vine Street in the 1990s.

Roosevelt Boulevard at Oxford Circle: Six fewer lanes for pedestrians to cross means improved pedestrian safety and friendliness. Photo: Sandy Smith.

Pedestrians can cross Oxford Circle without fear, for instance, because the inner lanes dip beneath it. Putting those lanes in a trench that runs the length of the street would not only make the existing pedestrian crossings safer, it would open up the possibility of even more places to cross, especially if the submerged inner lanes are covered with a cap. That cap, in turn, could either be landscaped, restoring the Boulevard to something like its original appearance, or–thanks again to the street’s width–it could support mid-rise, mixed-use development that could truly transform the Boulevard into a real Main Street for Northeast Philadelphia.

And as a bonus, that trench could also accommodate the one mass transit project just about everyone agrees needs to be built, a subway for the Northeast. Forget light rail: there is enough demand for transit in the Northeast to justify true rapid transit instead of a half-measure, and a recent cell phone poll conducted by the Philadelphia City Planning Commission demonstrated that if we built it, people would ride.

A Northeast Philadelphia extension of the Broad Street Line remains a key component of the Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission’s Long-Range Vision for Transit, and the City Planning Commission’s poll helped shape the final form of the recently adopted Lower Northeast District Plan, where the poll results can be found. (Some argue that rapid transit lines in freeway medians still give the car pride of place and an advantage over transit. I suspect a driver stuck in rush-hour traffic on Chicago’s Dan Ryan Expressway while Chicago Transit Authority ‘L’ trains zip by would beg to differ.)

Of course, all this would cost serious money, and cost is what derailed the city’s last serious effort to make this vision a reality in 2003. But the benefits would be well worth the expenditure. All we need to do is put our reflexive antipathy to urban freeways aside. Vine Street showed that such roads can improve the urban environment for all if built right. In the Northeast, we have another chance to do that.

Sandy Smith has been engaging in journalism and its hired-gun cousin, public relations, in Philadelphia for nearly 30 years. He started award-winning newspapers at the University of Pennsylvania as part of a team and at Widener University all by himself. He has a passionate interest in cities and urban development, which he gets to indulge as editor-in-chief of the Philadelphia Real Estate Blog, and in trains and mass transit, which he indulges wherever and whenever he gets the chance. (You may know him as "MarketStEl" if you lurk on Philadelphia Speaks.)

Friday, July 31, 2015

Donald Trump Bridge Disconnect

China's bridges: "China, you go there now, roads, bridges, schools, you never saw anything like it. They have bridges that make the George Washington Bridge look like small potatoes." -

Yet what has Donald Trump ever said about bridges, in say the metropolitan area of his native New York?   Surely would not such a candidate complain or comment about NY not getting a single new crossing since the completion of the Verrazano Narrow Bridge?

In a radio interview, Trump said he’s convinced the cost of the massive bridge will balloon to $10 billion, a cost he said the state can’t afford. The current projected cost for the new bridge is as much as $4.8 billion, which includes both construction and financing costs.
The state Thruway Authority, which owns the bridge, closed on a $1.6 billion loan from the federal government for the bridge replacement project last week. The better option, Trump said, is reinforcing the current span, which stretches across the Hudson River between Westchester and Rockland counties.

“The bridge is a totally fine structure, but it needs renewal,” Trump told host Fred Dicker on Albany’s WGDJ-AM. “And the renewal can be done for a tiny fraction of the — in my opinion — $10 billion bridge that they’re going to build.”

Trump offered no basis for his $10 billion estimate, aside from detailing his expertise in real-estate development.

The Thruway Authority’s contract for the new bridge pushes much of the cost of potential overruns on the team of contractors building the span, though taxpayers are still on the hook in certain instances, such as if builders encounter hazardous materials or the state decides to add features to the bridge.

Why no mention from Trump about where have all of those toll monies gone?  Such as the toll collected on the Tappan Zee Bridge since it first opened in 1955 or so?

LOL, the bridge can’t handle the traffic it was not designed for 125 to 150,000 cars a day. The bridge was designed for 50,000 cars a day and is of a design that requires a lot of maintenance, which has not been done. However the bridge was made during a steel shortage and is not constructed of a gauge of other NYC bridges, it was designed with a life span of 50 years. It is made of small box steel girder and truss transfer beams. Take a look at in contract to the steel on other NY area bridges. It needs to go and soon. Trump has likely only flown over it recently, no sweat off his back.

Conscience of a Conservative on
Trump is very wrong here, but I suspect he doesn’t care and just wants his daily publicity. The Tappan Zee bridge is in dire need of upgrade as it’s the life-blood for those crossing the Hudson. The State did err, but on the side of not including a light rail option.

In judging the fiscal soundness of the project the State should be thinking about the increased productivity of residents on both sides of the Hudson, along with increased tax revenue by making Rockland more desirable

Actually the State did more than err in not including the light rail, or rather the provisions for such, but more broadly the provisions for rail in general.  After all the Tappan Zee Bridge replacement was long projected to include a heavy rail component of a new Metro North passenger rail line from Suffern to Rye/Port Chester, later truncated to White Plains and than to Tarrytown.

Such was projected to be carried by a lower deck- a feature included in the George Washington and Verrazano Narrows Bridges.  Yet one in-explicitly dropped, even as the EIS left that option out of its cost benefits analysts a logical basis for a law suit that was never brought about.

What happened to all of the liberal-left "progressive" support for expanding rail transit?

Come to think why do we hear so much about Trump, yet so comparatively little about other NY area developers that HAVE proposed new crossings, such as that who proposed the Cross Sound Tunnel?

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Out Of Manhattan; Disproportionately Through The Bronx

Bob Dylan's recently found apparently un-sung song against construction of the Lower Manhattan Expressway at a time of planning by Robert Moses, who opposed the necessity of such highways as tunnels to shield the adjacent-nearby neighborhoods

Listen Robert Moses by Bob Dylan

Listen Robert Moses, listen if you can.

It's all about our neighborhoods that you are trying to condemn.

We aren't going to sit back and see our homes torn down

So take your superhighway and keep it out of town.


We won't be moved, buddy, we won't be moved.

We're fighting for our rights and we won't be moved.

We're fighting for our rights from our heads to our shoes.

We're fighting for our homes and we aren't going to lose.

For twenty years there's been a shadow hanging round

That any day the bulldozers will throw our houses down.

We're going to lift the shadow once and for all good

We don't want a superhighway, we want a neighborhood.

Some of use are young and none of us are old.

But none of us like to be thrown out in the cold.

Are we squatters in the city that we are living in?

Will we stand up for our rights or be scattered in the wind?

Up and down Mulberry, Delancy Street, you hear our voices sing.

From Elizabeth to Thompson, to Varick Street and Broome. 

We're trying to have our streets from that superhighway down.

Too many other people have been driven from their doors

To make room for some highway or else some fancy stores.

They've been forced to leave their homes and all their roots

And dwell in housing projects, the reservation kind.

Its time to make a stand, it's time to try and give

This here neighborhood of ours before it lands down in the grave.

So hold up your banners and raise them to the wind

We'll stand here and fight, and fight until we win.

Joint Committee To Stop The Lower Manhattan Expressway
378 Broome Street

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

The Westway Opponents were even more wrong than we thought

The Village Voice was wrong about Westway- totally wrong

The Saw Mill, the Bronx River, and parts of the FDR were closed due to flooding this morning thanks to the monsoon that kicked in before dawn. But the West Side Highway, a.k.a. the Joe DiMaggio? Traffic is flowing fine there, thanks in large part because we never built Westway, the crazed multi-billion-dollar-city-in-the-river landfill project that Presidents, governors, and mayors desperately fought to build back in the 1980s. You don't remember this? Count your lucky stars. It was one of the last great attempted public arm-twistings by the Permanent Government -- a bid to give the ever-campaign-generous real estate industry its most coveted desire: More Manhattan land on which to build. ....

Marcy Benstock, the upper West Sider whose anger at the thick soot that piled up on her window sill every day turned her into one of the city's earliest and most able environmental activists, says that the decision to dump Westway looks smarter all the time. "With climate change and more severe storms hitting the Westway area of the Hudson River," says Benstock, the director of the Clean Air Campaign, "the decision not to build a development site at that damage-prone location now looks wiser than ever."Marcy Benstock, the upper West Sider whose anger at the thick soot that piled up on her window sill every day turned her into one of the city's earliest and most able environmental activists, says that the decision to dump Westway looks smarter all the time. "With climate change and more severe storms hitting the Westway area of the Hudson River," says Benstock, the director of the Clean Air Campaign, "the decision not to build a development site at that damage-prone location now looks wiser than ever."

Such was the Village Voice congratulating itself for its mindless opposition to the Westway highway project.

Now, flash forward to 2014.

At a recent holiday gathering, one of the things that came up over cocktails was Superstorm Sandy and two of the proposals to protect us from the next such storm. Both call for adding landfill in the East River near the South Street Seaport. One plan—called “Seaport City”—proposes building housing and new parks. The other—known as “The Big U”—involves digging a tunnel beneath the landfill and sending a portion of the FDR Drive underground.

The proposals come from serious planners and post-Sandy studies. Seaport City emerged from Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s post-hurricane revision of his PlaNYC long-term sustainability plan. The Big U was a winner of a design competition—sponsored by the Federal Department of Housing and Urban Development called Rebuild by Design—seeking proposals to protect the region. Both studies noted that one of the areas least affected by Hurricane Sandy was Battery Park City, largely because it is built on landfill that helped keep back the surging waters. ...

So did the Big U, one of the winning design solutions in the HUD competition. The Big U would create a barrier system that would be combined with new buildings, bike paths and parkland that would hold or hold back water.  It would wrap around Manhattan from West 57th Street down to the Battery and up to East 42nd Street, and include a series of berms, seawalls and barriers. A key element of the design is to landfill some of the East River along the lower part of Manhattan, build parks on top of it, and tunnel a new FDR Drive beneath.

And that just may bring the Westway debate full-circle. Landfill—the very thing Westway critics warned would destroy Manhattan—now appears to be vital to the island’s survival.

Friday, April 17, 2015

New York Metro Region Needs An Additional Bridge To Connect Westchester County With New Jersey

Provide Relief to the George Washington Bridge/Trans Manhattan-Cross Bronx Expressway

Upgrade Westchester, N.Y.'s Cross County Parkway & Build A New Trans Hudson Bridge Connecting Yonkers and New Jersey with a northern extension of the New Jersey Turnpike

People have long spoke of the need for additional trans Hudson River crossings in the New York metropolitan region, something north of The George Washington, and south of the Tappan Zee Bridges, with mentions of two options from Westchester County westward to New Jersey: Yonkers, and further north in Hastings on the Hudson.

There is only one east west freeway between the George Washington Bridges I-95 Trans Manhattan-Cross Bronx Expressway and the Tappan Zee's Cross Westchester Expressway, which is the Cross County Parkway, which has its west end in Yonkers, about 1 mile from the Hudson.

The Hastings option would require an all new freeway along the Jackson Avenue corridor at least about 1.5 miles eastward to I-87 and the Sprain Brook Parkway, if not Central Avenue and the Hutchinson River Parkway just to the north of Wilmont Road.

The Yonkers option would require about 1 mile of new approach road construction, plus the option of reconstructing an additional mile or so to a reconstructed improved interchange with I--87 to handle trucks, with an existing Cross County Parkway already connecting to the Bronx River, Sprain and Hutchinson River Parkways the latter which should have its segment to the north reconstructed with at leas one additional lane in each direction.

Both options have the option of connecting in New Jersey to the north-south Palisades Parkway, where there is no east west freeway.  At one time, a western such extension was envisioned.  Steve Anderson's site discusses that - the New Jersey Route 14 Freeway - here.

Because of the lack of such a facility, some have spoke of this as simply a Parkway bridge, merely connecting an extended Cross County Parkway with the Palisades Parkway.

However, even though that latter road could be widened with adding an extra lane in each direction, from 2 to 3 lanes in each  direction, such a crossing would funnel a significant amount of traffic to the Palisades Parkways southern terminus with I-95 right at the I-95 approach to the George Washington Bridge.

And such a plan would do nothing to provide an alternative route for trucks to avoid the heavily used I-95 Trans Manhattan-Cross Bronx Expressway, which is significantly more difficult to add capacity than the parallel routes to the north.

With much of the George Washington Bridge traffic headed either west on I-80 or south on I-95/New Jersey Turnpike, the greater need would be for connecting the new Yonkers-Alpine Bridge to a northern extension from the New Jersey Turnpike.

Thus, it would be best to supplement the Palisades Parkway, with connections to link the new Hudson River Bridge with the New Jersey Turnpike.

Such an idea was once formally proposed, going all the way north to the existing interchange with I-87 in West Nyack near the Tappan Zee Bridge, but was successfully opposed.  Steve Anderson's site discusses both the built New Jersey Turnpike and ts proposed but unbuilt northern extension here.

As such, that facility provides the opportunity for an additional mixed use route that permits trucks, and would thus involve a Westchester County mixed use freeway connection to I-87 whether as an improved western  Cross County Parkway in Yonkers or an all new route further north in Hastings.

The least impactive plan for that would a route taking advantage of the northerly hook of I-95 route, immediately east the northern end of the New Jersey Turnpike, there adding an additional set of carriageways that would flank I-95 for about 1 mile before splitting away to enter a trenchway along the railroad paralleling Nordholf Place.

In order to reduce its local impacts, such should be built largely as a cut and cover tunnel further north along that railroad, coordinated with new development.   About 3 miles to the north of I-95, a drilled tunnel segment would turn easterly towards the Hudson River a bit south of the Tenafly Nature Center where the topography drops, with the roadways there emerging to connect with the new Hudson River Bridge for the Yonkers option, or a bit further north for a Hastings option.  Optionally a cut and cover tunnelway could continue northward to I-287/I-87 at the Nyack Valley Shopping Center.

I have not as of yet seen any old studies upon either a Hastings or a Yonkers Bridge.

However, a Google Earth review of Yonkers, N.Y. shows what appears to be a logical landing area, located immediately inland of the Yonkers Amtrak Station, as marked by a 2 block long north south "Bridge Street" which connects three east-west streets: Knowles Street to the north, Pier Street to the south, and Ludlow Street in the middle.  That very name "Bridge Street" suggests that this is a location where such a bridge has been contemplated.

Such an extension along either side of Ludlow Street would naturally become elevated as the topography drops towards the Hudson River.  Where the topography rises, the freeway could be built either as an open cut or a tunnel for crossing the ridge between downtown Yonkers and the existing Cross County Parkway terminus.

To handle mixed use traffic, thereby allowing a truck bypass of the George Washington Bridge, the western portion of the existing Cross County Parkway would be rebuilt to a newly upgraded interchange with I-87, with such an interchange should be built with fly-under ramps in order to provide superior geometrics with reduced visual and traffic noise impacts.  Such an interchange project would provide the opportunity to permit an additional lane in each direction upon I-87, likewise constructed in stages.  Perhaps such an interchange could be partially covered to provide extra land in the Cross County Parkway Shopping Center area.

The remaining Cross County Parkway meanwhile should be moderately improved bringing it up to at least a continuous minimum 4 lanes in each direction to its split in the Wartburg area of Mt. Vernon.  Likewise, the Hutchinson River Parkway to the north should be brought up to a minimum of 3 lanes in each direction with added stone arch overpasses constructed in northern New Rochelle and Scarsdale. 

A future project could address the Cross County Parkway east of I-87 to upgrade it ultimately to accept mixed use traffic.  Such a project would not only bring its lanes up to a 12 foot wide standard, but also lower the roadbed grade as it passes through central Mount Vernon, and erect a lid atop that trenched segment, and add a tunneled extension to I-95 in New Rochelle just south of the existing toll plaza near New Roch City.

Optionally, this new Hudson River Bridge project could be staged by deferring construction of the New Jersey Turnpike extension, and initially opening it with part of its built capacity.

Another idea would be constructing a spur link in the Riverdale area of the Bronx and south west Yonkers connecting such to the Henry Hudson and Mosholu Parkways.

View Larger Map

View Larger Map

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

LME Route Blockage By New Essex Crossing Development Project

Yet another real estate development project without regard to the broader transportation picture.

Essex Crossing Demolition Special
Developer Profits Over People!
A new real estate development - Essex Crossing -- is scheduled to start construction in the Spring of 2015.

It's location, upon that area of parking lots to the south side of the east - west Delancey Street, and the north side of Broome Street, stretching 4 blocks eastward from Essex Street, directly conflicts upon the area for the easternmost portion of the unbuilt Lower Manhattan Expressway at the approach to the Williamsburg Bridge.

Later LME proposal with eastern portal at Essex Street

Project was pushed in 2013 by the then current NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg.

It would create over 1,000 new dwellings.

It was to have 500 underground parking spaces.

Streetsblog is currently gloating over a decision by the developer to fail to include any vehicular parking, promoted by NYC Council Member Margaret Chin, under the assumption that everyone should be arriving by foot or mass transit.

Earlier this year, the developers decided to drop parking from the project entirely, even though the city pushed for up to 500 parking spaces — above and beyond the parking maximums that would normally be allowed under the zoning code.

The city, which initiated the project before selecting the developer, saw off-street parking as an elixir to help the project go down smoothly with the neighborhood. But it was not economical to build that much parking, and the developer eventually chose to eliminate parking entirely because site limitations would have placed the garage in a problematic location.

Streetsblog and Streetfilms recently sat down with Council Member Margaret Chin, who represents the area. Chin has advocated for the city to replace parking garages with affordable housing in her district, and she thinks things will be just fine without parking in the new development. As she says, people have plenty of other options for getting around.

Parking is usually provided beneath, so it is not clear how failing to provide such necessarily means extra affordable housing.

Even if such parking was provided aboveground in a tower it is unclear why that should preclude such extra dwellings as the project does not utilize the full extent of the space as allowed under current zoning.

In any event,  Margaret Chin, who was born in Hong Kong in 1954, moved to the United States in 1963, and has been a City Council Member since 2009, has gotten on the eliminating parking bandwagon in general.

Streetsblog argues that providing parking within new projects is expensive.

There are plenty of reasons not to build parking garages. For one, they’re expensive. New York City is the costliest place in the country to build structured parking, according to the Department of City Planning, at $21,000 per space. Sometimes, it can spike as high as $50,000 per space. That would put construction of a 500-space garage anywhere between $10.5 million and $25 million.

Yet consider what is charged for such parking in New York City.

If for instance a parking spot brought an average of $50 in revenue daily, that would add up to $36,500 in two years.

If the figure were $25 daily average, that $36,500 would come in 4 years.

If $12.50, then 8 years.

Yet the life expectancy of the parking spaces would be far longer.

Such spaces provided for residents would support a more diverse population, with friends that drive in from afar, and even for use for storage bins.

And traffic into and out of the garage need not interfere with sidewalk pedestrian traffic, if equipped with center loader street ramps.

Providing such is not about ignoring transit.

Indeed would not transit tend to be better run if it were not so dependent upon the idea of making driving more difficult?

Streetsblog creator and funder Marc Gordon was reportedly not renounced his use of his private automobile. 

The Streetsblog dogma against parking is simply about maximizing developer profits, getting everyone to accept a smaller and smaller piece of the proverbial pie.

So why are his screeds against automobile use by others given so much undue respect?

Essex Crossing needs to be stopped until re-designed, with at least 500 parking spaces, and extra density, while preserving the space for the LME to dip beneath into  a new cut and cover tunnel with new buildings atop westward to the already constructed tunnel segment beneath Christie Street, before a transition to either a drilled set of tunnels, or a double deck cut and cover tunnel beneath Broome Street, so as to preserve the SoHo district cast Iron buildings.  Such a facility would connect with a West Side Highway and to a Holland Tunnel facility with at least two additional tubes,

If built in its current configuration, Essex Crossing should be considered a demolition special to be torn down and replaced with a future air rights development project atop a tunneled LME.

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Streetsblog Founder Marc Gordon

Promotes greater efforts for accommodating pedestrians and bicyclists.

Yet also promotes anti new road dogma that primarily serves the power elite that wish to push the traffic burden disproportionately upon less affluent areas, as the primary need for new roads involve freeways that run through or near the more affluent areas. (see 48:00)   Says NOTHING about innovative freeway design mitigation.

Also promotes anti parking dogma.  (see 50:00)

"Driving is an activity that harms the world"  (52:00) -  Says NOTHING about vehicular technologies such as alternative fuels nor electric propulsion.  Nor does he mention if he owns vehicles nor drives.  Certainly if he believes such a philosophy he should not own a vehicle and should drive as little as possible with rented or shared vehicles to set the example.

Comes across as an urbanest with some good ideas - pedestrian and cyclists have been to a degree overlooked in transportation planning - yet horribly out of touch with the needs of a great many people, particularly for transportation flexibility to accommodate a wider range of dwelling and job opportunities.

Likewise, his ideas for transit primarily fixate upon slow speed rail, with little or nothing about making bus and van service more appealing at significantly lower cost.

Friday, April 10, 2015

Autombile Enthusiasts Need To SAVE Off Street Parking Requirements

Read about guys as this who look for older automobiles to save.

Think abut it.

Every older automobile that was saved had a home- namely an off street parking space of some type.  Preferably indoor, and preferably affordable.

Think of all of the older such autombiles that were tucked away in garages.

In drive ways.

In car ports.

Or even in parking lots.

Generally within some residential development, whether freestanding house, some garden apartment, townhouse or larger apartment.

Look at the paring that was provided in such developments.  And thank God for the polices of building such parking.  Just imagine how many fewer survivors there would have been without the off street parking that have served as their homes.

And consider how this is under attack.

There is this recently crafted land use movement, generally calling itself 'smart growth' or 'new urbanist'.  It claims to be pro people, and favors better accomdations for pedestrians and cyclists.

Yet it is strongly anti automobile, and weirdly anti freeway, given how the latter provide alternative routes away from the surface streets with their pedestrians and cyclists.

It has people who have a grudge against autombiles, particularly those belonging to other people, as such types generally  refrain from not owning or using one or more themselves.

Two examples of such transgressors are David Alpert and his web site Greater Greater Washington, and Marc Gordon of his web site Streetsblog.

Both are on a major mission to get authorities to reduce or eliminate parking minimums that require developers to include off street parking within their residential projects.

Peruse such sites to see this for yourself.

Read about such activities by David Alpert/Greater Greater Washington here

Alpert’s position in the fracas, though, was somewhat unique. Where most Washingtonians tend to kvetch about how difficult it is to snag a street spot, Alpert wanted less parking, not more. Back in 2008, as the District’s Zoning Commission started work on a comprehensive rewrite, Alpert embraced the idea of decreasing the number of parking spots required for new developments.

“That was my first exposure to the antis,” Alpert says, employing his general label for people who oppose change on principle. “Because I went to these meetings, and there were these people, like Barbara Zartman from the Committee of 100. She was there to fight hard for keeping the zoning the way it was, basically, against the efforts of the Office of Planning to upset the apple cart of these prohibitions on lots of things.”

Alpert took to the blog he had started earlier that year, Greater Greater Washington, to launch his counterintuitive counteroffensive. For 10 days, he posted one reason per day why parking minimums were bad: They make housing more expensive and render good commercial development projects unfeasible, he argued. They increase traffic. They’re a reason, in other words, that locals pay so much in rent, have so few places to shop, and spend so much time in traffic.

But as a July hearing on the subject approached, Alpert knew that making reasoned online arguments wouldn’t be enough. “What I was telling people was, we really need to get people to go, there’s going to be a lot of antis there, they’re really organized, they’ve got all these groups,” Alpert remembers. “And maybe our best hope is just to get enough people there so that the Zoning Commission sees that there are two sides to it, and then maybe they’ll be OK approving it.”

Sure enough, 24 advocates showed up to testify in favor of the zoning change, speaking far into the night. Only a handful came to oppose it. And the measure—a sharp blow to the District’s auto-friendly status quo—passed.

For the record David Alpert reportedly lives near DuPont Circle where he owns and keeps his own private automobile.  If that's true, he is a hypocrite, and has likely adopted this anti off street parking ideology in order to get the sort of mass coverage from corrupt media organs as The City Paper and The Washington Post that are all behaving as beholden to some elite coven that one must agree to such fallacies in order to gain acceptance.   Its the sort of dogma as 'new new roads' which really means no new freeways, as the most need ones would pass through the areas of the wealthiest and most overly influential, such as those on the north shore of Long Island opposed to any bridges or even tunnel crossings of Long Island Sound.

Nosh1- Alpert and his followers are tiresome in their lectures on how people should live, that personal vehicles in the District are unneeded luxuries, especially if you live near metro stops, regardless if you have families, jobs outside the District etc. His hypocrisy really shows through as this childless, formally retired individual lives in a multi-million dollar town-home mere steps from the Dupont circle metro stop, yet he himself has his own personal vehicle. 

This campaign against parking minimums is indeed something being pushed by a well funded array of organizations, and promoted in numerous publications, as obvious from a simple goggle search of the term 'parking minimums':

In a nutshell, they claim that providing parking makes dwellings less affordable, never-mind the dynamics of it being more like getting people to settle for a smaller and smaller piece of the pie, with no guarantee of a lower price.

Nor is there any mention of the flexibility of having the extra space.

For instance the ability to store one or more automobiles, and/or storage bins for extra personal property, nor the ability to rent out such space if one so choose to do so.

If it were more about making a dwelling more affordable than simply increasing the short term profits of the developer by inducing people to settle for, why are not these factors even mentioned in all of this discussion about eliminating parking necessarily making a dwelling less expensive?  Including parking within a building's substructure is certainly no less expensive than at the time of the initial construction

There are plenty of apartment units in Manhattan that are continually subdivided, while the price per square foot remains high.

If such had been built with greater space, including underground parking, each building would have cost more, but the expense would be amortized.

With the extra parking/storage space, there's greater flexibility to provide different sized apartments for different sized dwelling populations, thus fewer units need not necessarily result in fewer people, as there would be more families who tend to move to suburbia in part due to the lack of spaciousness.  Even upon a basis of numbers of living units, the desire to live close in could have been better met by continuing the denser development patterns for a greater area, with ample rail and bus transit and mixed use to mitigate automobile travel demand, while providing the freeways generally at the periphery of urban neighborhoods for efficient longer distance automobile travel.

Contrary to Alpert, it is not a zero sum game with extra automobile traffic with good mixed use urban design that reduces the need to use one's own automobile, while still allowing the option for city dwellers to maintain such for more occasional use.  Nor does even this more occasional such automobile use have to mean the level of auto-pedestrian conflict that we see with common urban garage entryway designs.  As earlier urban designs placed cart-ways via rearward alleys, new designs could combine that concept with street located center loader ramps that eliminate the vehicular-pedestrian conflict.

Of course all of this is least expensive when included within a building's design initially.

What Alpert and company are doing is working to eliminate parking requirements so that developers can simply make greater initial profits, and providing parking becomes more expensive and hence less practical and less likely.

Providing parking spaces will naturally be costlier in denser developed more urbanized areas, due to higher land prices, and that of excavation over above ground structures.

However, the anti off street parking movement will work to expand that to less dense areas, and should be viewed as a threat to the automobile hobby.

No longer will as many people have an off street spot or few to store older automobiles, thus encouraging many to scrap such autos, rather than keep them for the benefit of future generations.

With fewer off street spaces are fewer opportunities to use such, including that of renting spaces in urban areas at greater cost, and that in suburban and rural areas at a reduced cost- particularly useful for less expensive space for longer term, infrequently accessed storage.

One thing that people can do is boycott such developments that fail to include off street parking, particularly with projects built from the ground up where there as the opportunity for including it within the substructure, and those in more suburban areas, where developers attempt to get over upon buyers with marketing such as more 'urban' rather than just more greedy.

Another thing is to keep an eye upon the strongly out of balance anti-automobile perspective of Streetsblog.

It has numerous posts about what it terms "parking craters" in numerous cities, where one could make a case for increasing density, even eliminating some parking capacity by replacing lots for new buildings, while recoiling in horror at Streetsblog's concurrent support for eliminating relatively rare parking facilities within Manhattan for yet more of what is already common there- residential buildings.

Likewise, Streetsblog celebrates actions done in the Netherlands to make urban streets more pedestrian friendly by slowing down vehicular traffic, citing an article from there that notes the need for different approaches to road design for urban streets and freeways.  Yet Streetsblog will cite that with a tone that implies that the approach for freeways and rural highways, such as rumble strips and break away fixtures that forgive errant motorists are somehow wrongheaded- never-mind the Netherlands article making no such claim.

One merely has to listen to Streetsblog founder Marc Gordon.

His mission is not to simply make things better for pedestrians and cyclists.

It is to make it more difficult for people to use an automobile.

And as may be expected by logical extension, to own and keep automobiles.

It is as if they serve an elite.  One that prefers that fewer people have automobiles.  One perhaps heavy upon wealthy DNC funders who live in the apartment towers facing the lower two thirds of Manhattan's Central Park.  And which has little or no love for the automobile hobby.

Indeed, given the poor state of the economy, should not the political powers that be be somewhat more interested in creating jobs, particularly in the vast chasm between manufacturing and low level service jobs?

Consider the potential for job creation by stimulating the demand for restoration work.

Whether old houses, airplanes, boats, and of course automobiles.

Rather then have people keep money locked away in tax free IRA to the degree that they do, allow people the option of tax free withdrawals if the money is spent upon restoration projects.  That would create jobs, stimulate the economy with more people with work and thus money, while allowing people to maintain their equity.

With automobiles being the physically smallest of such items, so called excess off street parking becomes an important pillar of this added economic stimulus.

Eliminating off street parking requirements would only discourage such by requiring people to spend considerably more money renting such space elsewhere, denying them the cost savings if such space were included initially, for the sake of increased short term developer profits.

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Al Gore Confession About The Big Money Elitist 'Environmentalist' Movement

I have to be frank.

I, like alas so many others, are such pieces of political work. 

I am presented as a left leaning, liberal 'progressive' environmentalist.

I have spent much time upon promoting the issue of man made climate change, which focuses upon man made emissions of CO2, primarily from combustion for transportation and for electrical generation, exceeding the ability of our planet's vegetation to process into oxygen to maintain a sufficient atmospheric balance avoiding excessive CO2 concentrations that would raise temperatures to melt polar ice thus raiding ocean levels.

Yet the main thrust of what I have done, as with this 'liberal progressive environmentalist movement'  alas has been tailored to a selfish set of elites, who are more about protecting key industries of big business and commodities, rather than saving humanity.

Yes I have done good work, some good works.  Such as promoting a few alternative technologies as solar and wind power.

But while other countries have accomplished quite much with that, to wit, Germany under Chancellor Angela Merkel, I myself have been guilty of going with the dark side of what's passes off as 'environmentalism', of guilting out people for enjoying modern lifestyles that are really quite modest compared to my own, with my multiple mansions and high flying private jet travel, emitting far more CO2 emissions, and via such travel, such emissions at high altitude furthest away from the plant vegetation that could digest it.

Yes, I own  mansions, with monthly utility bills greater than the yearly bills of almost everyone that I have chastised.

And yes I fly by private jet rather than simply book flights upon jets that are going to be flown anyway and servicing way greater numbers of people thus resulting in a relatively way way less of a CO2 footprint.

Yet I recently placed my name upon a ridiculous proposal to ban automobiles in all of the world's cities, at a cost of some $90 TRILLION, which would cost considerably more than building modern underground road projects and better parking facilities, along with better bus and rail transit and pedestrian and cyclist accommodation.  And to sell people the idea of living in far more cramped dwellings, while myself using private jets and limos and owing several mansions.

Well, what should anyone expect from anyone connected with the big money liberal progressive environmentalist movement?  One made up of wealthy benefactors who not only use automobiles, but also small private jets and live in relative opulence, who travel to exclusive meetings generally closed to the public and not televised, to discuss ways to make the general public feel guilty over the environment?

One based way less upon advancing newer technologies that would accommodate a modern lifestyle for greater numbers of people.

And one based way more upon making people feel guilty about their life-style's impacts upon the environment.

One that would save such existing big businesses, rather than save humanity, for the sake of a power elite that includes even those would prefer that many people simply die, rather than admit to new technologies that would allow a growing population a modern lifestyle.

And one that is centricated upon the perspective of the mass of political funding from such places in the United States that fund the Democrat National Committee, namely central New York City's Central Manhattan.  And thus one that is hopelessly out of touch or indifferent to the needs of much of the country.

So they do not want to constructively undermine the existing dirtier commodities and technologies by advocating cleaner alternatives.

Instead, they want to heavily stress guilt.

Make people feel guilty for having a modern lifestyle, and call restrictions that would impoverish rather than empower people

Central to this is the two pronged intelligentsia assault on people owning and using automobiles, and the heavy promotion of the dogma of no new roads, by which we mean no new express highway/grade separated freeways.

Inexpensive private automobile ownership provides an infinitely far greater choice of flexibility of choosing where to live and where to work.

Good roads support that.  And the no new freeways dogma - given that most of our interstate highways were built - is all about placating the whims of the overly influential who are obsessed with keeping much needed road links away from anywhere near their properties.

Just look at the situations with the political paralysis to construct new bridges crossing the Potomac River within and near Washington, D.C..

Or crossing the Long Island Sound.

Or, let alone the I-95 link through Washington, D.C..  That would displace a small fraction of dwellings than that of many built let along un-built freeway segments.  Yet, it would run right next to Catholic University of America, which is next to the centrally located railroad-industrial corridor that best accommodates the freeway.  And which was weirdly botched around and following the assassination of President Kennedy, who had championed that idea.

Sure, they could do innovative designs to successfully mitigate these freeways.  Cut and cover tunnel construction would re-purpose the surface area back to other uses such as new development and park-lands, while blocking traffic noise.

But it is not about reconciling public uses with the concerns of the elites.

Rather, it's the broader picture of the mercantilist system in propping up petroleum.

To wit, vehicular tunnels create localized hot spots of pollution at their portals, where people could get a good whiff and get a better idea of how badly we are polluting the atmosphere.

It may be said that such a facility increases pollution.  But in fact it more concentrates it so we can smell it at such localized hot spots.   Not building such a facility may be said to result in less vehicular traffic.  But in reality it certainly only reduce it at that spot, with the traffic primarily dispersed over a larger area still existing, but just not so concentrated in such a hot spot where it can effectively advertise the need for cleaner automobiles and cleaner fuels.  And by building a highway tunnel there is the intrinsic potential of using that to capture and filter much of the emissions, rather than have it all simply go into the atmosphere.

As there are downturns in the economy that can temporarily reduce traffic demands, particularly the manufactured gasoline shortages in latter 1973, removing a working freeway is removing a traffic light free route and relocating any such traffic demand onto other roads, whether those roads are parallel freeways, traffic light surface streets or railroads.   Notably those who downplayed the significance of removing 50% of Manhattan's north-south freeway capacity with the December 15, 1973 collapse of the West Side Highway Viaduct seem to forget the October 1973 OPEC petroleum embargo, and growing demand since upon such routes as the parallel East River FDR Drive.

But as per the broader picture of the mercantilist order, it is all about guilting the people out, distracting them from the need and the feasibilities of emerging technologies.

You know- get the people to work against their own best interests.

That's been the mantra of the liberal progressive movement since the early 1900s.

Just look at how it got people eager to surrender their freedom of medicine and diet for the sake of far costlier and more toxic synthetic petroleum based pharmaceuticals.  That was done with its unjust smearing of naturally based liquid preparations as 'nostrums' and 'quackery': a campaign by such charlatans as Harvey Wiley of the USDA and the AMA, belied by such things as the ridiculous scare campaign against soft drinks containing small amounts of cocaine and caffeine, while weirdly giving tobacco cigarettes a virtual free pass.

So "Roads" and "Cars" are perhaps the two favorite things for liberal progressives, who are primarily urban, like to bash, in addition of course to "capitalism" which serves to distract from the real problem of *crony* capitalism- aka Mercantilism.

Regarding Roads and Cars, just look at such things as the 'liberal progressive' land-use transpiration advocacy intelligentsia.

For instance, the web site Streetsblog.

And its founder Marc Gordon.

He touts making the world in general, and cities in particular better for pedestrians and cyclists.


But he goes beyond that, with a deep anti automobile dogma.

Not simply for improving things for pedestrians and cyclists.
But for making driving more difficult per se, with blanket statements against automobiles and particularly freeways.  One apparently divorced from any quantitative or qualitative measurements as air pollution, and more based upon an elitist disdain for automobile ownership and use-age by common people.

Streetsblog will for instance cite an article from the Netherlands about how they found that  design principles for higher speed roads as freeways made way less sense for surface streets in cities.  Such as straighter more forgiving roads to save the lives of errant motorists with rumble strips to awaken drivers that fall asleep.  Greater crash zones, etc all of which save lives. That instead city streets should be designed to slow traffic to make things safer for pedestrians and cyclists.   That such urban streets should be thus designed differently than the higher speed roads.  Which is reasonable.

Yet Streetsblog will cite it in a way implying that this is not so reasonable: that we should not simply design the urban streets to such principles for such laudable goals, but that we should more or less do likewise anyway, everywhere, which would include the higher speed roads, including those outside the cities.
Not exactly a fount of new ideas. So it’s not surprising that the discredited “forgiving highway” approach — the idea that design should accommodate inattentive, reckless driving to the extent possible — permeates the report, with its recommendations for rumble strips, “crash cushions” around objects near roads, and the elimination of trees.

That’s not how America will get to zero deaths — it’s how we’ll keep falling behind.

So according to Streetsblog, rumble strips, crash cushions are all bad per see?

And we get these ridiculous Bloomberg-DelBlasio no left turn and no right turn daytime prohibitions in Manhattan upon the narrow east-west streets at intersections lacking the heavy pedestrian traffic of say around MSG,  simply, as per Marc Gordon's cherished dogma, to make driving more difficult, and to raise revenue.

And of course there is a generalized disdain via Streetsblog for better energy technologies applicable to automobiles or perhaps anything in general.

Many transportation reformers were disappointed last week when the Pew Center on Global Climate Change released a report indicating that only clean car technology had a shot at significantly reducing greenhouse gas emissions. The report dismissed smart growth development strategies and transit as trivial contributors to a lower-carbon economy.

Whereas affordable automobiles and modern roads give greater flexibility in dwelling and job flexibility to far greater people, and with the relatively higher cost of dwellings in denser areas, why should not Streetsblog also be enthusiastic about cleaner automobile technology?

After all, why is it amongst the environmentalist and urban 'smart growth' planning clique that one finds perhaps the strongest 'skeptics' of alternative fuels, and improved battery technologies?  Or why they practically never even mention let alone discuss the idea of breaking the petroleum monopoly via an open fuel standard.

And regarding actually making transit generally more appealing in more cost effective ways, why so little attention upon bus stop mini stations that could also be used for van and car service, as opposed to the costlier laying of street car rail tracks?

Because mainstream liberal progressive environmentalist entities as Streetsblog represent elitist, old moneyed interests based out of places as Manhattan.  Their perspective is not only urban; it's mercantilist as well as parochial.

The last thing they want is new technologies-commodities etc to significantly displace such existing things as petroleum.  Thus, as an example, see how any logical tendency of the younger generations support for ending the drug war to carry over environmental and transportation issues get stymied.

Why do you think that that 'mainstream' environmentalist movement ignores industrial Hemp?

That could address so many things.

Hemp has so much to offer the environment.

And Cannabis (Marijuana) has so much to offer.  Medicinally moreso then most people had dared imagine with its generally superior effects in fighting cancer and other illnesses.  And recreation-ally as a far superior substance than alcohol- which the drug war is all about protecting- along with Tobacco.   We could save so much money by moving towards a more herbal based medical practice, to say nothing of the social ills of he excessive use of alcoholic beverages with a move towards recreational Cannabis, rather than hiding behind this false morality that is OK with massive persecutions of people through the police and the courts for this utterly disgraceful alcohol-tobacco market protectionism. 

Yet we mainstream liberal progressives have been quite disappointing.

President Barack Obama unfortunately is really quite an embarrassment, such as with his recent comments on climate change telling people to not care about ending Cannabis prohibition.  Never-mind the pathetic sight of the first African American U.S. President essentially telling us to disregard civil rights, which is what continuing support for the drug war is.   Industrial Hemp offers much as a superior source of bio fuels something our big money liberal progressive environmentalist organizations are too beholden to promote.  Just read Jack Herer.

And sadly, so have I. I have been too afraid to advocate industrial hemp, let alone medicinal and recreational Cannabis, making me a 'liberal progressive' who does not give a damn about human rights when it comes to 'drugs'.  Never-mind the enormous costs of enforcement and in human misery.

We have been disappointing in standing up for basic human rights, and in being so beholden to the big money establishment that we have effectively kept ourselves grounded.

For instance, there's tremendous potential for good with different forms of nuclear.

I don't mean so much the standard technologies around in mass since the 1950s, or even somewhat better stuff as thorium.

Rather, I mean newer technologies, particularly low temperature nuclear fusion, with low cost, non polluting non CO2 emitting power.

Sure solar is a good option for stationary use, powering our buildings.  But, asides for plugging in our electric vehicles, it falls short for mobile uses where we perhaps need it the most: namely that which emits a great amount of CO2 furthest away from the vegetation that's needed to process that into oxygen- air travel.

If you don't rely simply upon television and newspapers for information, you stand a likelier chance of knowing about devices as the Rossi Reactor, as well as advanced tech electric automobiles as the Remac - with 1,000+ horsepower with a 300 mile plus battery pack- as if incorporating something like a Rossi reactor to produce far more electricity than customarily expected from batteries.

If I were truly serious about  addressing CO2 emissions, I would be actively promoting things as Hemp biomass fuels and things as the Rossi Reactor issue rather than act as if I am too afraid to even mention such.

Likewise, as one can find by searching the internet, NASA has allocated some funds for electromagnetic jet engines.  These do not burn liquid or gaseous fuel, nor are they some variant of a solid fuel rocket engine- all of which share the disadvantage of having to carry so much weight in fuel, let alone emit tons of CO2 nor far worse expellants.

That, combined with electromagnetic jet propulsion would potentially revolutionize air - or rather flight - travel.  It would not only free existing air travel from burning all of that liquid fuel and pumping out all of that CO2.  It would also free such from having to carry all that heavy fuel, thereby liberating such travel from the pull of our own gravity, with single stage to orbit and beyond craft!  Yes, because fuel weight would no longer be a major issue, we would not even need to have so many different types of space ships, instead using a winged vehicle conceivably for an entire trip- though with added thrust vectors for landing and taking off in reduced or non atmospheric destinations.

Yet instead we hide behind reactionary sloganeering.

Such as the no nukes dogma, with such sad things as the U.S. Green Party rejecting motions to support such low temperature, infinitely cleaner nuclear technologies.

Or the anti automobile -- anti car - crapola, while I own how many automobiles myself and perhaps never take transit, with flying done in small private jets.

And we pretend that the drug war is some sort of sanctified holy war by daring not advocate Hemp-Cannabis, let alone address the drug war for its broader purpose of controlling the use of medicine for the sake of bloated AMA clientèle profits, despite all of the lip service to addressing our health care cost crisis.  Why such such organizations as the AMA continue to get over upon the general public?


Because of the big money behind much of the environmentalist movement is largely about protecting existing commodities- placing that ultimately above accommodating a growing population.  You've heard about zero population growth.

You have heard about Malthusianism.

But have you heard about crony capitalism- aka Mercantilism?

New technologies as low temperature nuclear fusion would liberate humanity from expensive fuel costs year in and year out.

Adopting such technology to air transportation may provide the greatest benefit in net CO2 emission reductions given that such occur at high altitudes the furtherest away from the vegetation that can digest such.

But what's passed off as liberal progressivism is anything but being designed to con people into supporting the interests of the power elite against themselves.

That's why the Left is so obsessed with opposing 'capitalism' without any adjective-modifier, which is simply having an economy.

After all, the term capitalism implies capital, aka money means not having to rely upon barter and has a definition of making a profit- which in of itself means sustainability, as profit is hardly intrinsically bad, rather its grossly excessive profits, such as that seen in the medical industry.

And that's why we get all these 'liberal progressives' as actually salivate at higher fuel taxes and higher taxes in general while actually neglecting what a fraction of such revenues should deliver.

Why do you think there is so little cry about the excessive local property taxes as ts supposed to fund eduction.  'Liberal progressives are way to much into measuring success by the height if the tax rather than the actually accomplishments with the money.

Note that perhaps none of the people that publicly espouse this liberal progressive environmentalism walk the talk.

I decry having a large CO2 footprint.

Yet I own several huge mansions.

When I travel, its by executive jet so I don't have to mingle with ordinary people.

Why?  Its because I like it.  As do the others participating in such liberal progressive environmentalist politics.

Yet we fail to come out and support newer alternative technologies and commodities.

Instead, we tell OTHERS that THEY should feel guilty.

We bow to those elitists that would rather see much of the world's population go away, rather than threaten the existing mercantilist order with new technologies that could allow a growing population to be accommodated in a far more environmentally friendly way.

And we all promote this via dependence upon people throwing their votes away via mindless party loyalty.

Just look at New York, particularly N.Y.C. which re-elected Andrew Cuomo as its Governor.

Or Democrats who to this day support electing Hillary Clinton as President of the United States in 2016- with a recent poll indicating an 86% of support amongst those registered as Democrats!

Just look at how the elites betray the masses.

N.Y. has a pressing need for additional capacity for crossing the Hudson River.  It has not built any new road capacity since adding the lower deck to the George Washington Bridge n 1962, which followed the opening of the 3rd tube to the Lincoln Tunnel in 1957 and the original Tappan Zee Bridge in the 1950s.

And it is even worse with railroad capacity with a set of century old passenger rail tunnels that will need major overhaul if not outright replacing, and get this, no freight rail crossings whatsover until one goes 140 miles to the north to Sedkirk, just outside Albany alongside I-90.

So there has been this planning effort for a single track freight railroad beneath New York Harbor directly connecting New Jersey and Brooklyn, that is projected to cost over $7 billion.  It's a pet project of Congressman Jerry Nadler.

Yet check this out.

The Tappan Zee Bridge is currently being replaced, after a planning process that lasted some years.

It was being considered with the framework for a lower roadway deck.

Such was to provide space for adding a new passenger rail line as part of the Metro North system, originally from Sufferen, N.Y. to Port Chester N.Y., and later cut back to White Plains and then Tarrytown, yet still crossing the Hudson River.

Of particular and extra importance here was the space potential for adding a second rail component- freight.

Freight cars could have fit within the lower deck.  And double stacked freight cars could have fit in the median space, as this project is for a set of twin spans.

The lower deck option would have added about $200 million to this $3 billion or so project.

There are already the existing rail lines on either side of the Hudson.  And the gradients of the proposed designs were entirely acceptable to the west, and off by only 1/10th of the 1% required grade to the east with the looped tunnels they drew up to make the grade change given the bluff.  A slightly longer loop tunnel would have bright this within the required gradients to connect these rail lines for freight, thus freight trains would only have to go 27 rather than 140 miles in each direction out of their way to bring goods into New York City and Long Island- the latter which has no crossings whatsoever east of the Throgs Neck Bridge.  So perhaps for $250 million they could have had a bridge project design that could provide our new trans Hudson rail fright crossing for a fraction of the $7 billion Jerry Nadler single track rail freight tunnel.

The Tappan Zee Bridge replacement apparently never addressed the rail freight issue but at least had a good cost effective design providing great flexibility.

That is until sometime in 2012.

Though they had a pair of good designs, each shown with a single and a double deck version, all of this would be scrapped in favor or a different design practice.  That would show about 6 different bridge design, ALL with only the single deck.  Obviously, SOMEONE made a decision to scrap the lower deck.  And of these new designs, they could not have picked a WORSE option.  It features these ridiculous outward canted chopstick towers.  Not only do they make a mockery, given that overlooking this bridge's site to the northeast is the site of a long closed GM automobile factory that lost market share to Japan where such are utensils for eating.  The outward canting of the towers impedes upon the vertical space in the median space between the new twin spans thus impinging upon the vertical clearance necessary for accommodating double stacked rail cars.  Go figure!

Now with Andrew Cuomo at the helm, how did this happen?

Well though you would not have known it from attending some of the public meetings on the planning for the project, there was an organized yet not necessarily widely reported upon protest movement against the lower deck.  Not necessarily one with much popular support.  But one alas with the politically sufficient heavyweight of the politically connected television personality: Rosie O'Donnell.

She had purchased and had restored a mansion in Nyack, N.Y. on the west side of the Hudson River a few years earlier.  It was not one of those houses within a few hundred feet of the bridge, but rather about 2 miles to the north.  Word is that she objected to the slight increase in the replacement bridge's profile with the lower deck, and lobbied Cuomo to have it scrapped.  They do know each other, as Cuomo attended the marriage of her brother, who is a N.Y. State Assemblyman, that was held in early 2012.  It was shortly afterwards that the lower deck option was scrapped.  And this was done without any public explanation.  And with a project EIS that would fail to include a discussion of he cost effectiveness of the lower deck.

No word if the outward canted chopstick towers were likewise Rosie O'Donnel's selection, who has since sold that mansion.

Yet way to many people support this sort of politician.  Including myself, as I issued the following statement about his dad, Mario Cuomo:

Mario Cuomo's passion for justice, decency and fairness gave him an unparalleled eloquence that stirred America deeply. His leadership, authenticity and powerful advocacy reflected the strength of his character and his unshakable commitment to the most vulnerable and to those who most needed policies and principles that reflect the best of America. He was shaped by his immigrant family's love for our nation and gratitude for the opportunities it gave them to work hard and build a bright future, and he in turn took great pride in the wonderful family that he and his beloved Matilda raised and shaped. We have lost a rare and truly great leader.

Note that this sort of leader had bragged about building more new prisons in the State of New York then any other of its Governors in history.

But such was the result, to no small degree, of the 'liberal progressive' environmentalists in New York.

Remember Westway?

That was to have been a project to construct a replacement West Side Highway along the Manhattan Hudson River waterfront, replacing an obsolete original elevated designed during the 1920s that was woefully deficient in geometry and by 1973 was falling apart.

Westway was to be a modern interstate grade freeway, with its northern part a viaduct and its portion to the south of 29th Street within a box tunnel buried within new landfill supporting an extension of the existing street grid one block westwards with new mixed use development and parkland, furthering a historical process of extending Manhattan outward, displacing what had been piers for Manhattan's shrinking landing area for boats indeed the pier at the southern end of the project was where Titanic was scheduled to dock.

Although Westway was to replace an existing established freeway, did not even include extra continuous travel lanes (even though it could have very easily been designed with such without displacing  people's dwellings), it came under a vicious attack by these 'liberal progressive environmentalists' under allegations of being an air pollution hazard, as if such vehicular traffic would pollute less if instead upon a stop and go traffic light intersection 12th Avenue, and upon parallel such roads.   They would loose this argument in Court.  And the real reason behind that was the increased pollution at the 'hot-spots' at the tunnel portals, which is the real reason for the 'liberal progressive environmentalist opposition to urban road tunnels. They don't want so much to reduce air pollution but rather its perception, as such tunnel portal hot-spots would be an excellent reminder of the need to significantly further reduce automobile pollution via cleaner propulsion, particularly electrics and cleaner fuels aka an open fuel standard.  So instead they prefer that the pollution is a bit more dispersed such is the essence of the big money liberal progressive environmentalist movement- particularly one prone to 'thinking' in lock-setp.

So once they lost the supposed 'clean air' argument, they seized upon the supposed striped bass issue, as there were these fish that had a habit of spawning within the scheduled landfill area, with such a concentration artificially induced by a sewer outlet!  Thus, the next law suit against the project argued something like that it presented an unacceptable impact upon these fish, and this fish hatchery.

Now there are plenty of ways they could have dealt with this.

Perhaps divert the sewer outlet.

Provide a substitute hatchery.  They have already had programs of dumping retired subway cars into water bodies to provide such sanctuary for fish.

They could have even modified the Westway design, perhaps with something built out at the edge of the newly extended waterfront, and/or even maintained a break in the landfill at the edge of the existing waterfront bulkhead essentially making Westway not a pure extension of Manhattan but rather a peninsula or immediately adjacent island.

But if any such ideas were ever presented, the public never heard them in the din of the onslaught of lock-step journalism as that seen almost weekly in such media organs as, most notoriously The Village Voice.

That was because the 'liberal progressive environmentalist' community had already locked itself into the idea of outright canceling the Westway project in order to abscond with its construction funds via a transfer of such funds to N.Y. City's mass transit bureaus - a move that by the very admission of such Westway opponents as the organization Transportation Alternatives yielded a fraction of the total monies that they were able to have provided for transit not involving canceling any highway projects.  Of course canceling Westway to provide some extra money for mass transit made even less sense when one notes that only 5% of the tolls upon the vehicular crossings- bridges and tunnels-  goes towards highway maintenance, and the rest, 95% is diverted to transit.

But this make perfect sense to many Manhattanites who do not own vehicles, don't drive, and who give little or no thought to those that do, including the truck drivers that bring their goods, making life for so many people on that slender island that produces about none of its own food.  Westway, replacing an existing antiquated freeway with a modern one particularly in a tunnel to give the waterfront back to pedestrians and cyclists was supposedly a great waste of money to these types.  And such was an opinion that conveniently forgot to consider the value of the extra land, including what would have been the additional perpetual property tax revenues.

Yet they were apparently OK with spending greater and greater sums of money upon building more prisons and upon more police and court overtime for prosecuting the war on drugs as there was hardly any outcry over any of that in NYC remotely comparable to that against Westway.

This was not only with Democrats as then Governor Mario Cuomo, who at least had once supported Westway, but worse so with the 'liberal progressives' as Bella Abzug, and also with Cuomo's initial 1982 Republican Gubernatorial challenger, Lew Lerhman who campaigned against Westway as a supposed waste of money, yet supported the official inquisition of people who sought alternatives to alcohol, Tobacco and caffeine..

The 'liberal progressive environmentalists' and 'fiscal conservatives' made sure that Westway's $3 billion or so was spent elsewhere.

Subsequently, Mario Cuomo spent - on constructing new prisons, largely in response to the drug war alcohol Tobacco market protection racket hysteria over a University of Maryland student/Boston Celtics draftee Len Bias accidentally killing himself in June 1986 by drinking a gram of cocaine powder.  Indeed, some of the Westway funds actually were subsequently transferred for police overtime for the war on drugs.  Yet where were the liberal progressive and fiscal conservatives on that?

Meanwhile, while Westway's demise was celebrated for the $3 billion or so of its funds absconded for questionably audited transit agencies and the drug war, planning continues upon a $7 billion single track freight rail tunnel while New Yorkers remain oblivious to how a 2nd Governor Cuomo would SQUANDER a significantly less costly alternative for accommodating a Hudson River rail freight crossing upon a replacement Tappan Zee Bridge project.

With the Village Voice having been so obsessed with stopping Westway as a supposed waste of money, and with that paper being so fixated upon homosexual people, why does not that paper - or indeed any paper write an expose upon what Rosie O' Donnel got away with, getting over upon an entire region over her interpretation of 'the View'?

Indeed, given that she had Cuomo kill Tappan Zee rail freight, thus costing extra billions simply because she objected to the slightly greater bridge road-deck profile from her mansion some 2 miles to the north, why has not she ever used her national soapbox to make her case on that appropriately named television show of hers, 'the View'?

Because she really had no case.

Just like those wealthy creeps in Rye, N.Y. and northern Long Island who weer dead set against developer Michel Polimeni's proposal for bringing I-287 to the Route 135 freeway by a deep drilled tunnel.

Back in 1973, N.Y. then Governor Rockefellor capitulated to these type by canceling the long planned for Rye to Oyster Bay Bridge, leaving Long Island without any fixed connections to the mainland east of the Throggs Neck Bridge.  This is clearly an intolerable situation that wastes lots of fuel and time.   Especially after 911 with all of the lip service over evacuation route capacity.

So Polimeni and others figure that if they were going to object to the surface disruption for a surface highway approach and bridge crossing, than make it a tunnel out of sight and conceivably out of mind.  It would be a deep drilled tunnel, and the approach north of the existing Route 135 terminus would be cut and cover providing new parkland facilities and the like.  They announce this proposal in late 2007.

But then later, nothing.

And we have this weird sex scandal with this orchestrated newspaper campaign the following spring to force N.Y.'s Governor Eliot Spitzer to resign for being busted as "Client #9" at a prostitution business called "Emperors' Club" - clearly an establishment catering to the famous - yet we never hear about Clients #1-8 or 10 and higher.  The story was revealed March 10, 2008, and he resigns 7 days later.

And sure enough, a Long Island newspaper writes a story re-posted here, suggesting that this scandal may have been a political move to stop the tunnel, which Spitzer was reportedly set to come out to publicly support; all of which gets derailed by this scandal.  And New Yorkers would hear almost nothing about the Cross Sound Tunnel proposal since.
So is it any wonder that so many meetings of liberal progressive elites where the decisions are made are neither open to the public, nor televised

Instead the idea is to keep the public ignorant, filling the media with junk as day time soap operas and evening 'news' regarding celebrity entertainment.  Jheez!  Just look at the crap programing, even today with hundreds and hundreds of channels on cable television.

So is it any surprise that people in New York would re-elect someone as Andrew Cuomo, who sells out the public interest, depriving millions of people a more cost effective rail freight crossing, for the whims of a celerity?!

And alas, I am partially to blame!

Just look at that television network that had actually owned: Current TV!

There I had the opportunity to educate the public.

And I blew it.

I even had ex N.Y. Governor Eliot Spitzer with a show that never discussed if even dared mention whatever happened to the Cross Sound Tunnel, let along Tappan Zee Rail.

Instead that show simply blathered about nothing.

And I subsequently sold Current TV to Al Jazeera, and it is now no more.

So why would I do that?  Why would I have a television network with national distribution and fail to use it constructively for educating people?

I could have used Current TV to inform people.

Such as about the need for a political new reformation.

One featuring a true environmentalist movement willing to stand up for our planet and our lifestyle all for the general masses rather than these mercantilist malthusians.

One that supports alternative fuels.

One that supports better forms of nuclear power.

One that supports better roads, including that with innovative mitigation design as seen for instance with Madrid Spain's M30 Tunnel project.

One that opposes the drug war and is pro choice in matters of medicine.

Yet instead I squandered the opportunity.

So what does that say about me?

Well, it involves the club that I joined in order to get ahead.

The club that I joined because I wanted to be the President of the United States.  And I was elected in 2000 receiving the greater popular vote.  But I had it yanked away from me.

So instead we got a second President Bush.

And perhaps we'll get a second President Clinton, who has been working at pretending to serve the general pubic while actually serving the elites, such as with her meetings with the major pharmaceutical and insurance industry for her Hillarycare initiative that should have been televised but were not.

Though that would be denied to her in 2008, with the unusual ascendancy of a 1st term U.S. Senator from Illinois, Barack Obama, who apparently knew a successful move to make upon the political careerist chessboard to get selected to be elected.  And who now is working to deny her the top spot for 2016 when he can't be re-elected.  So there's something going on behind the scenes, perhaps with Elizabeth Warren seen as a more reliable tool for the power-broker elites.

And here I am today.

I have surrendered any hope for becoming a U.S. President.

Instead, I have accepted the job as a spokesman for promoting the idea of an urgency to reduce man made CO2 emissions.

Yet I fall right into the rut of promoting the agenda of the primarily urban wealthy liberal progressive elites.

Of guilting out the general public for having lifestyles far more modest than people as myself.

While ignoring emerging new technologies that would cleanly support a growing population yet undercut the very technologies and commodities that such an elite rely upon for maintaining their vast wealth.

Having squandered my opportunity to better educate the public about emerging new technologies through Current TV, I ought to take some of my millions of dollars and start a series of initiatives to showcase such technologies, in order too break the media black out information suppression of such.

One would be building a new house that is powered solely by solar and reactor technology, whether low temperature nuclear fusion, water splitting - made far more practical by using the proper radio frequencies to reduce the power requirements  -- or something else in order to produce electricity and be thus self sufficent.

Another would be hosting automobile events, such as races, for autos featuring such new technologies.  Think of the Tesla.  Now with a 691 hp all wheel drive version.  Or even better yet the 1,088 hp Remac, with a 300 mile plus range off a suspiciously small battery pack that appears like some new tech device- perhaps a Rossi Reactor.   Imagine such powerful electric automobiles that are not even hybrids as those by Tesla and Remac with even greater range because they contain a "battery" that is actually something as a Rossi Reactor low temeprature nuclear fusion device producing oggles of electricity for oggles of horsepower safely and cheaply.  With that we can completely bypass the idea of Thorium and start retiring our existing nuclear fission, and other electric power plants.

Another would be hosting automobile events for retrofitting existing combustion engined vehicle for burning different alternative fuels.

And why not other types of vehicles as well, such as boats!

Imagine the USS United States now mothballed in Philadelpia, retrofitted with newer technologies.

Let's change the IRA laws to allow people to get at such money without paying the tax if they spend it upon restoration/renovation projects such as these.

That will create decent paying jobs in the chasm between manufacturing and low level service job and be actually valuable to actually reducing unemployment, instead of simply juggling the figures as both the Ds and Rs like to do.

And for where its grossly needed, given the further proximity from CO2 eating vegetation- aircraft.

Let's have a program to ultimately replace combustion engined aircraft with those with electromagnetic propulsion, with the electric power provided by our new low temperature nuclear fusion reactors.

And since that eliminates the need for carrying bulky amounts of fuel, apply such technologies to space planes.

Lets likewise have an initiative to reintroduce science into our education curriculum, along with civics and home repair.  Let's teach our successive generations about the importance of knowing more about the physical and political world, for creating a better world.

Alas, that would be opposed by the overly influential Manhattan Central Park DNC funder elitists, who would rather keep the general public dumbed down. That's why we have all of this 'liberal progressive' denial of suppressed technologies and support for zero population growth or even population reduction- they actually favor their existing technologies and commodities over humanity.

That's their driving philosophy!