Finally – what has been anticipated for nearly a century – is in action. The Second Avenue Subway opened to the public for business at the beginning of the year, on Sunday 1st January at 11:45 am.
It seems that Uber is destroying the taxi market, especially in New York City. There are tons of abandoned taxis pulling up on Brooklyn streets and lots of drivers moving over from taxi companies to Uber. This is creating a huge loss for taxi companies such as McGuinness Car Service, in Brooklyn. Hossam Yossri, one worker there said that drivers keep quitting to move over to Uber.
But the question is, is Uber really so much better? Watch this video and you can see why it is not all so clear cut and that Uber doesn’t necessarily have all the right answers.
Thomas Prendergast, Chairman of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, referred to it as “New York’s next great public space.” Centrally located at Broadway and Fulton Street, the building has real presence. Built at a cost of $1.4bn, taking 10 years, the glass-and-steel entrance opens up to a 90-foot skylight. Featuring the nine existing subway lines within 180,000 square feet, it is due to serve 300,000 passengers per day.
The key engineer on the project, Michael Horodniceanu called it “the station of the 21st century.” It is quite a change from the old Fulton stop where passengers were forced to rush through narrow corridors, trying to avoid other passengers, trying just to not get knocked down!
There are 27 entrances into the building – all of which are handicap accessible. There is a 350 foot tunnel that connects the Center to the Santiago Calatrava as well as the PATH commuter New Jersey train.
Culturally, the new station is also impressive since the historic building brings everything full circle, back to the 19th century when the place was actually central to New York City.
It started back in 1980 when buses and subway trains went on strike in New York, making getting around the five towns very difficult. Fast forward 14 years and these modes of transport were legally able to serve parts of the city once they got a license from the New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission In comes dollar vans, and the rest as they say, is history.
Today, dollar vans are a great way of getting around. Over the last year, Aaron Reiss took to the streets of New York and set about investigating the pros and cons of these, as he himself hopped aboard the dollar vans, covering: Chinatown, Flatbush, Eastern Queens, Eastern Jersey and The Edenwald Line.
He shares his findings in an article that was published by The New Yorker entitled New York’s Shadow Transit. In terms of Chinatown, since increasing rents have resulted in a lot of Chinese immigrants having to leave Chinatown, the dollar vans are great for them since they are inhabiting places without decent public transportation. With these, Reiss found, transportation time is cut in half since it only takes around 35 minutes to go via this method from Chinatown to Flushing as opposed to around 90 minutes via the subway.
Brooklyn residents like the vans too. It reminds the ones who have Caribbean roots of home, resulting in inspired reggae tributes and in-van concerts known as Dollar Van Demos! Indeed, what it seems like, is that not only are these vans a great way of saving time and money, they add an entire culture to lifestyle and living in the Big Apple.