New York' City's election and the cyclist vote
An advocacy email from NYC sustainability mobility advocacy group Transportation Alternatives informs us that candidates, seeking every possible vote, are reaching out to bicyclists and bike events to push their candidacy.
Most candidates attended last weekend's Tour de Queens" ("Cyclists take part in sixth annual Tour de Queens " from Queens Courier), which attracted more than 1200 cyclists toia 20-mile ride around the borough, and even Anthony Weiner, who I marked as anti-bike given how he referred to bike lanes as "fucking bike lanes" as part of his "forgiveness tour" is promoting the expansion of transportational biking.
From the Capital New York blog entry "Weiner and de Blasio Now Vying to Be the Bike Candidate":
Today, Anthony Weiner visited a cycling shop in Chelsea called Zen Bikes and proposed a tax break worth $120 a worker for employers who promote biking to work by underwriting biking-related expenses. His goal? To increase bike commuting by 25 percent in the next four years.
From the New York Times article, "For City’s Transportation Chief, Kudos and Criticism":
ON a balmy night last June, the city’s Congressional delegation gathered for dinner at Gracie Mansion. Representative Anthony D. Weiner, who aspires to live in the mansion someday, knew he would have only a few minutes with the host, Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg. So he brought up the hottest topic he could think of: bicycle lanes, and the transportation commissioner who had nearly doubled the number of them, Janette Sadik-Khan.
“When I become mayor, you know what I’m going to spend my first year doing?” Mr. Weiner said to Mr. Bloomberg, as tablemates listened. “I’m going to have a bunch of ribbon-cuttings tearing out your [expletive] bike lanes.”
-- Transportation Alternative's I'm Voting for Safe Streets advocacy campaign, and the elements of the campaign:
• Safe Neighborhood Streets for All;
• Transportation Choice on Commercial Streets;
• Data Driven Traffic Safety Enforcement
The Streetsblog entry, "Quinn’s Policy Book Skews Toward Transpo Issues the Mayor Can’t Control by" has links to most of their coverage on the various candidates and their positions on transportation issues.
While the piece is critical of the positions of Christine Quinn (currently chair of City Council) as being for transportation initiatives like congestion pricing and the East Side Access Project which will connect the LIRR to Grand Central Station which are the purview of government agencies beyond the control of the Mayor, I'd give her some slack.
I'd be ecstatic to see candidates for office in DC mention comparable projects in their platforms, let alone the backhanded criticism of biking that we experienced in the last election--obviously not in the case of DC Mayoral Candidate Tommy Wells who is probably the only Councilmember who bikes regularly.