June 27th - July 1st, 2011
NYC DOT Issues Wayfinding RFP
June 27 – While some areas of the city are easier to navigate then others, a recent survey by New York City Department of Transportation reports nine percent of New Yorkers and 27 percent of visitors admitted to being lost within the past week, reported Transportation Nation. Many others couldn’t point north and 31 percent of all trips in New York City are made by foot. To address the needs of pedestrians, DOT issued a request for proposals (RFP) for a single integrated wayfinding system that will be piloted in four districts: Long Island City, Prospect Heights/Crown Heights, Chinatown and parts of Midtown.. To The deadline to respond to the RFP is July 27.
St. Nicholas and Supporters Rally to Rebuild WTC Church
June 28 – Parishioners and supporters of the Greek Orthodox Church, destroyed on September 11 rallied at the WTC site, reported Huffington Post. St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church and the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey have been at odds for several years over the cost and location of the rebuilt church. St. Nicholas whose history dates back to 1916 had a preliminary agreement for a land swap in which the church would give up rights to its former site on Cedar Street in return for a larger property on Liberty Street.
Tourist Bus Plans Opposed from Both Sides
June 29 – The city’s tour bus parking plan is drawing criticism from both tour operators and residents, reports DNAinfo. The Department of Transportation is planning to charge buses $20 per hour to park in designated spots south of Houston Street for up to three hours. Additionally the tour operators believe there aren’t enough designated bus stops and the three-hour time limit will not be adequate to allow for the tours to visit all the designated Lower Manhattan sites. Residents however believe the fees are too lenient and the plan doesn’t go far enough to deter buses from parking downtown or in neighboring areas. The city is preparing for the anticipated influx of visitors after the September 11 Memorial opens.
Two Not Guilty in Deutsche Bank Fire
June 30 – A second defendant, Jeffery Melofchik, who was safety manager during the buildings demolition, was acquitted in the Deutsche Bank manslaughter trial, reported the NY Post. Jurors in the trial say prosecutors failed to hold the right people accountable for the 2007 deaths of firefighters Robert Beddia and Joseph Graffagnino. For three months the jury heard evidence of the obstacles the fire fighters faced, including the 42-foot breach in the basement standpipe. Salvatore DePaola, an asbestos abatement specialist, was acquitted by the jury on June 28 of all charges. The verdicts for defendant, Mitchel Alvo, director of abatement will be decided by Justice Rena K. Uviller of State Supreme Court in Manhattan, who presided over the case.
Operating Engineers Reach Labor Agreement
June 30 – A works stoppage on many of the cities largest projects, including the World Trade Center was averted as the two unions representing crane operators, excavators and maintenance engineers agreed on a new contract late Thursday, reported The Wall Street Journal. The agreement was reached less then two hours before the contract was to expire.
300 Officers Assigned to WTC Precinct
July 1 – The NYPD is redistributing approximately 600 officers from Operation Impact, reported the Daily News. Nearly 300 officers in total will be transferred to the new World Trade Center command. The remaining will be directed to precincts in need of additional manpower. While there were complaints from some in the impacted neighborhoods, the NYPD says it is routine for officers to be redeployed and the Operation Impact initiative has been previously been staffed with less than 1,000 cops. After the transfers, there will be approximately 1,200 officers in the group. In an earlier statement Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly announced the WTC precinct would have 678 cops assigned to the precinct when fully staffed.