We’ve recently reported on Councilwoman Gale Brewer’s proposal to ban cars from the Central Park “loop,” as part of an overall effort to promote a safer and greener NYC. The city, however, doesn’t seem to agree. Despite overwhelming support by surrounding Community Boards and New Yorkers in general, the city has slammed the breaks on a proposed 2-month trial ban to study the effects of the proposed legislation on overall traffic.
“It doesn’t make sense,” said Community Board 7 Chair Mel Wymore in a report by DNAinfo, “We’re hearing a broad base of support, not only from our board members but from other boards that surround the park.” Wymore also believes that implementing a test ban is the only way the city would be able to collect and study data in regards to the impact the bill would have on traffic.
A spokesman for the mayor, Marc LaVorgna, stated yesterday that the city has no plans to enforce a trial period any time soon. LaVorgna also refused to comment when asked whether Mayor Bloomberg supported legislation to ban traffic through Central Park.
The bill was originally proposed by Councilwoman Gale Brewer in an effort to promote the city’s various green initiatives, such as PlaNYC. Specifically, all cars would be banned from using the west and east drive “loop” to circumnavigate the park, but would still allow traffic mobility crosstown. The bill also gives priority to health and safety concerns, especially given the fact that the loop puts many runners, bikers, and general pedestrians on the same path as moving vehicles.
Given the overwhelming support of the community, we hope the city reconsiders its decision and studies the matter more closely.