2002-12-12 / Top Stories

City Outlines Alternatives In Case Of Transit Strike

Mayor Bloomberg on Monday outlined the city’s strike contingency plan in response to a potential transit workers strike next week.

The New York City Strike Contin-gency Plan includes lane reversals, special HOV regulations, additional park and ride facilities, additional ferry service, truck delivery restrictions and a temporary ban on non-emergency construction, all of which are detailed below. The Office of Emergency Management’s Emergen-cy Operations Center (EOC) will serve as the coordination hub for the City’s strike contingency plan. All per-tinent City and State agencies will have personnel assigned to the EOC, which will remain activated through the duration of the strike. Additional information can be found on the NYC website: www.nyc.gov/transitstrike or tune into Crosswalks TV (Channel 74).

"A strike by the TWU would be illegal and the city will do everything in its power to prevent one," said the mayor. "A strike would be more than inconvenient; it would endanger hu-man life and devastate our economy …we have to prepare for the worst and New Yorkers may need to once again call upon their resiliency, toughness and ingenuity. Our contingency plan is designed to move as many people as possible using alternative means of transportation and to make sure that our streets remain passable for emergency vehicles. We will use ferries, carpools, and park and rides to move people around. Lane reversals, HOV restrictions and arterial roadways will keep traffic moving as best as possible. A strike would be incredibly inconvenient and frustrating, but if we all did our part and follow the plan, we would get through it."

• All Manhattan bridge and tunnel crossings will have an HOV 4 (minimum of four occupants per vehicle) requirement in both directions, 24 hours a day during the week, and will have an HOV 2 (minimum of two oc-cupants per vehicle) 24 hours a day during the weekend. The HOV restric-tions would switch from four to two people per car at midnight on Satur-day (Friday night) and to four people per car at midnight on Monday (Sunday night).

Sections of the following roadways will be HOV restricted: the Long Island Expressway, Bruckner Expressway, Harlem River Drive, FDR Drive until 96th Street, Henry Hudson Parkway until 72nd Street, Belt Parkway Gowanus Expressway, Brooklyn-Queens Expressway, and the Prospect Expressway. Please refer to www.nyc.gov/transitstrike for the boundaries of these restrictions.

•Key arterial roadways in Manhattan will be reserved for public safety vehicles and for priority transportation services from 6:00 AM – 8:00 PM. Priority transportation vehicles include medallion taxicabs, school, express, and charter buses, For Hire Vehicles (FHV), Access-A-Ride vehicles, and commuter van services with NYSDOT permits. These roadways include Fifth and Madison Avenue from 23rd Street to 96th Street, as well as 26th, 29th, 49th, and 50th streets from First to 12th avenues. The following roadways are reserved to Emergency vehicles only: Maiden Lane, Cortlandt, Nassau, Rector, Vesey, and Church streets in lower Manhattan.

•To accommodate extra traffic flow into and out of Manhattan, rush hour lane reversals will be implemented on the Williamsburg, and Manhattan Bridges, as well as the Queens-Midtown Tunnel, the Brooklyn Battery Tunnel and Staten Island’s Bay Street.

AM Rush (5-11 AM) PM Rush (3-8 PM)

Bridge/Tunnel # of Lanes # of Lanes

Manhattan Bridge 3 Inbound & 2 Outbound 3 Outbound & 2 Inbound

Williamsburg Bridge 6 Inbound & 2 Outbound 6 Outbound & 2 Inbound

Brooklyn-Battery Tunnel 3 Inbound & 1 Outbound 3 Outbound & 1 Inbound

Queens-Midtown Tunnel 3 Inbound & 1 Outbound 3 Outbound & 1 Inbound

Lincoln Tunnel 4 Inbound & 2 Outbound 4 Outbound & 2 Inbound

NYC has several Park & Ride facilities available access additional transportation, including Yankee Stadium, Shea Stadium, Long Island-Hunters Point Ferry Terminal, Belmont Park, Staten Island Yankee Stadium, Staten Island’s Cromwell Center, and St. George Terminal Parking. Numerous carpool staging areas, including nearby Marine Park, for commuters to meet colleagues, friends or ad-hoc groups prior to accessing HOV roadways into Manhattan, will be set up citywide.

Borough-Carpool Staging Areas

Brooklyn-Marine Park, Abe Stark Skating Rink, South Brooklyn Marine Terminal.

Queens-Flushing Meadows, Alley Pond Park

Bronx-Orchard Beach, Ferry Point Park

Staten Island-South Beach, Wolf’s Pond Park

Manhattan-148th Street and Riverside Drive

•Additional ferry service will be offered by both public and private entities covering various routes in and out of Manhattan. Existing ferry service will also be expanded.

•The Taxi and Limousine Commission will allow group rides in taxicabs. There will be taxi stands at Park and Ride facilities and around the City. The restriction on street hailing of livery cab services will be lifted and taxicabs will be able to pick up additional passengers even when they have a fare. In addition, the restriction on the street hailing of commuter vans will be lifted. People with handicap license plates as well as ambulate and para-transit vehicles are exempt from the special HOV regulations. The Taxi and Limousine Commission call center will accept requests for transportation from affected persons in the disability community and forward requests for service to licensed transportation providers. The hotline number is 212-NYC-TAXI (212-692-8294).

All of those who are able to walk or bike to work are encouraged to do so. The crossings into Manhattan that are pedestrian and bicycle accessible can be found on the previously mentioned website..

•All non-essential roadwork will be suspended. State transportation agencies will be requested to similarly suspend non-emergency construction on major approaches to NYC. Works in progress will be plated over.

•Alternate-side parking regulations will be suspended citywide to increase the amount of on the street parking.

•Truck deliveries will not be permitted south of 96th Street in Manhattan from 6:00 AM – 10:00 AM. Regional law enforcement and transportation agencies will be requested to divert trucks from bridge and tunnel approaches during these hours.

While most New York City Transit bus and subway will not be operating in the event of a strike, the Staten Island Railway, as well as New York City Transit’s Staten Island and Brooklyn, Queens and Bronx franchise buses will not be affected. They will continue to operate, but commuters should be prepared for significant crowding and delays.

In addition, within 24 hours of an actual strike, the MTA will put in place a contingency plan to provide limited additional service for Queens and Bronx commuters on the Long Island Rail Road and Metro-North Railroad. Commuters should be prepared for crowding and delays. Details of that service are available at www.mta.info and in a printed brochure now available at major railroad stations such as Pennsylvania Station, Atlantic Terminal and Grand Central Terminal later this week.

Please note that this information is subject to change.

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