I have to bring a child down to NYC for university (which is already expensive enough), and now this! I’m for it reducing congestion and changing behaviors, but wow, it stings a bit.
It’s a one-time thing for you, so don’t sweat it too much. One way or another, they stick a vacuum hose in your wallet the moment you enter the city anyhow.
Apart from taxi and commercial drivers, I’m not sure why anyone would voluntarily drive on a regular basis in the mess that is Manhattan traffic. Commuter rail and the subway and your own two feet will get you in and out and around the city in a much shorter time than a car ever would.
You’re right and I agree. It’s a small twist of the knife to me and a major hassle for so many more.
I love NYC by rail and foot, I’d never drive there if I could help it.
not necessarily true. i live on the queens side of the east river, and we think nothing of zipping into the city by car, it is faster than any bus or train. who this will hurt are people who need to go to the city on a regular basis for doctor’s appointments and treatments, and for whom traveling by mass transit will be extremely difficult. that is not a one-off either. for instance, for my family that is at multiple times per month. add the 20-40 you need to pay for parking and all of a sudden that doctor visit is $50 plus, just to get there and park, multiple times per month. there are other examples i am sure where congestion pricing will be a hardship for people – parents bringing kids to schools being just one. i could accept it if it would work, but if it is administered like everything else in this city it will just be a gigantic, expensive mess.
I was on crutches for six months due to a knee injury and two subsequent surgeries. Had to cab it everywhere, including to the hospital for surgery, doctors office before and after, physical therapy, let alone just getting out of the house and having a life.
I’m all for keeping commuters from bringing their death machines into the city (it’s not just NJ but also wealthy commuters from Westchester and Connecticut) and reducing the amount of tractor trailers and tourist buses from clogging our side streets. But cabs should definitely be exempt.
I am fortunate and thankful for being able to afford it, but for most people living in NYC this will be very difficult and could even be life threatening.
My rule of thumb is, if you must go by car anywhere in Manhattan below 125th St., just pay someone else to do the driving. Even if it costs slightly more than driving your own car, it’s well worth it.
I don’t think driving themselves in lower ooor midtown Manhattan is going to add to the quality of life and lowered stress levels for anyone who has to do this. Taking a taxi or town car makes a lot more sense and eliminates parking fees and hassles.
That’s a real edge case. There just aren’t that many parents from out of the borough who feel compelled to drive their kids to the handful of specialty public or upscale private schools in Manhattan. Kids who do that usually either take transit or (if the parents are wealthy) are chauffered there. Not a real hardship.
From what I’ve read, they’ll just collect the fee at the bridges and tunnels below 59th St… I do hope they give taxi drivers a break, but otherwise I have no issue with NYC or any other city charging congestion fees.
Is public transit into the area and then taxi or more transit, a viable option?
Congestion pricing works well, because the side benefit is bus service runs quicker, more reliably.
I’m generally “for” this type of thing, but the implementation is going to completely screw the people who matter. The tax money will just be funneled to the NY suburbs who refuse to build dense housing near train stations. They just spent $11b to connect LIRR to Grand Central to save a few thousand people an extra subway ride and the ridership is very low. Good use of money people.
And now, NY State will sent all of this tax money to the 'burbs since NYC does not control its subway nor the commuter railroads. They need more buses and subways - but only a tiny tithe will happen.
And then, those from NJ just get screwed. None of the tax money will improve transit on PATH or NJT train or NJT bus. None of the money will go to Port Authority Bus Terminal. That tax will get paid and transferred to some far off 'burb.
If there were to split the money better to improve entry from the west-side of Manhattan, I might support this. This will have zero benefit for me as a driver and as a public transit commuter.
And yes, I would still drive into NYC even with the tax. Right now, it is nearly the same price to take a family of four on the bus + one subway ride as it is for the tunnel toll and to park in a garage. Only $23 more for 90 minutes of less travel time, uh, sure, why not.
Caveat: I have seen nothing about sharing anything with PortAuthority or NJT - thus my assumptions above - I would like to be proven wrong.
And Still: No train service across the George Washington Bridge (GWB), the busiest bridge in the world. The GWB connects NYC and NJ and has an upper and lower deck. When the lower deck was added, rail service was part of the design. So where’s that rail service?
There’s no carrot - it’s all stick!
Assuming they don’t screw this up, the intention is that the transit system would be improved by this. I just hope they’re ready… Christie hosed the Path train expansion so NJ people are kinda screwed.
Metronorth can handle more people… and once they finish airtrain from Willets Pt to LaGuardia I’d prefer that to driving.
I mean, we just rebuilt the Tappan Zee bridge 5 years ago, and we didn’t add rail to that, which seemed colossally stupid at the time.
There is no planned tracks for the upcoming Newark Bay Bridge replacement on the NJTP either. So stupid. Nor did we put tracks on the brand new Bayonne bridge - which is perfectly lined up with the Hudson Bergen Light Rail to get to Staten Island. Again … cars cars cars.
I started taking the bus to the N train (at the time the R) to the 6, going from Astoria to the upper east side for Hunter HS, when I was 11. That was in 1982. It is fine for kids to take themselves on public transit. In case anyone is interested, despite mass psychosis about kids being left anywhere on their own in the rest of the US, the earliest recommended age for the NYC subway is 8… and that’s not a legal requirement.
One suggestion, which I liked, for Toronto was to make it mandatory to buy and display a public transit ticket to drive your car in the city. That’s not quite USD 23, though.
Good to know about this, so I think I’ll just continue flying Toronto Island to Newark and taking the train into Manhattan.
Honestly the behaviors it’ll change will probably be more from the deep Brooklyn/Queens and Lawnguyland sets, who up until this moment could avoid toll charges entering the Manhattan on any of the East River bridges. Which is insane and has been long due for correction.
(ETA: the QMT has a toll, but it’s a tunnel; the Triborough has a toll, but let’s consider that a bridge over the Harlem River rather than the Hudson for the sake of this discussion. It doesn’t touch down anywhere near the congestion zone anyway.)
Oh for crying out loud. Most Manhattanites (especially below 59th Street) do not own cars. Most Manhattanites do not routinely take for-hire vehicles to get around either!
Are people in London, Stockholm etc. who get injured in this way finding their cities’ congestion pricing scheme to be an insurmountable burden? Obviously no…
When my wife had ACL surgery maybe she was taking cabs a bit more than usual in the recovery process for a bit, but you know what she really did a lot more of? Taking the bus!
Bayonne Bridge isn’t new, the existing span was raised a few dozen feet to accommodate larger container ships.
New Goethals Bridge is entirely new though.
first responders will be able to move around the city easier ( or at least, it won’t keep getting more and more difficult for them ) – so plenty of lives to be saved on that end. ditto any amount of reduced pollution.
something’s got to change or nyc will be flooded someday anyway. so this seems worth it.
Especially since they could shave 20% off of the NYPD’s budget and fund all the public transportation!
Is there an exception for people who live in that area?