Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Red Hook Street Car Study: Interim Reports Available

The consultants for the Red Hook Street Car Feasibility Study have released two interim reports:

Case studies of  street car systems in Portland, Seattle and Philadelphia is a detailed look at how these cities have implemented new systems into existing cities.  The section on Portland includes terrific detail including photos of how the rails were constructed, bicycle coordination issues, handicapped accessibility and graphs of ridership.

The existing conditions report is a must-read document for the level of detail it goes into regarding Red Hook.  The report covers land use, demographics, public policy affecting the neighborhood and includes a wealth of illustrations and tables.  It is a fascinating overview of the neighborhood.

The consultants have identified potential routes (which includes Columbia Street within the Waterfront) and are now working on evaluating their feasibility.  Next steps will include cost estimating and evaluating constructibility issues.  Their findings will be presented in a public meeting to be held sometime early 2011.

If you are new to this subject, please visit the DOT Street Car website here for a general overview of the Study.

Rally for Shore Power

State Senator Daniel Squadron and Councilmember Brad Lander are organizing an event which will hopefully help end the stalemate on the shore power issue.  Below is the invitation they sent out today:

Dear Neighbors,

Please join us Monday at noon for a press conference and rally in support of bringing "shore power" to the Brooklyn Cruise Terminal.

Along with the community we have been pushing for shore power for a long time — now we are holding this "Stop Choking Brooklyn" rally because we can't wait any longer!

Switching to shore power — so that ships can hook up to the electric grid instead of idling their engines in port — would stop tons of unnecessary and life-threatening pollution, which is equal to thousands of cars idling.

The Port Authority and the Environmental Protection Agency have obtained $15 million in funding to build the necessary infrastructure. However, for shore power to become a reality, the Economic Development Corporation, which operates the cruise terminal, Carnival Cruise Lines which uses the terminal, and New York Power Authority, which delivers electricity to the terminal, need to come to a final agreement about the price of electricity.

Join us on Monday to rally for an agreement now, so the work needed to bring shore power to the Brooklyn Cruise Terminal can begin and idling cruise ships stop choking Brooklyn!

We’re going to be holding the event on Monday. Here are the specifics:
  • What: Rally to Stop Choking Brooklyn
  • WhenMonday, January 3rd, noon
  • Wherecorner of Van Brunt Street and Pioneer Street
There will be free surgical masks for everyone to wear in order to highlight just how much pollution is caused by the ships currently.

I hope you’ll join us on Monday as we rally in support of a cause that will make our community an even better place to live.

Thank you,

Councilmember Lander and Senator Squadron

Let's get out and let the powers that be know that our community really wants to see an end to pollution from idling ships.