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Friday, October 12, 2012

Tunnel Vision

Posted by on Fri, Oct 12, 2012 at 2:32 PM

The Bronx Parking Development Company, the public/private partnership that owns and operates parking garages around the new Yankees Stadium, has defaulted on $237 million in bonds. The Yankees are in the playoffs again, and posted the second highest attendance in the league, but the lots have remained only 43 percent full on game days, and virtually empty the rest of the time.

Atrios explains what went wrong:

The problem is that rich important people who influence and make policy decisions are drivers. Normal people would think that this is New York, the stadium is on top of 8 thousand rail lines, and relatively few people are actually going to drive to a baseball stadium. Decisions about how much parking is needed are made by people who live in a world where people drive everywhere.

It's actually a rather obvious observation, and one that could be applied more broadly in other areas of public policy. It can explain, perhaps, how a group of wealth white guys (you pick the legislative body) could fail to see how refusing to require insurance companies to cover birth control could in any way be seen as denying women the right to reproductive choice.

It speaks to the important of diversity in public office, because narrow experience can lead to tunnel vision. (Pun intended.)


Comments (7) RSS

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I'm a native New Yorker and a lifelong Yankees fan - I went to lots of games as a kid, but I grew up in the suburbs, so we drove. Before they built the new stadium, suburban rail access was minimal; you had to take the subway in order to avoid driving. When they built the new stadium, they built a commuter rail station that connected to all 3 lines of the second-heaviest used commuter rail system in the country. Damn right we're not driving anymore and paying 30 dollars to park. We drive a few minutes down the hill to my dad's condo, then walk to the train station. The new rail station must be taking at least a few thousand people -- every game -- out of cars to the ballgame. Hooray for transit!
Posted by bitethemailman on October 12, 2012 at 2:47 PM · Report this
Will in Seattle 2
That sure sounds like the 99 Tunnel.

Totally insane.

By the way, the bus redeploy still has commutes taking longer for a lot of people on the North End along the Ship Canal. Looks good on paper, but means lots more walking just to get to a bus that goes PART way.
Posted by Will in Seattle on October 12, 2012 at 2:51 PM · Report this
*cough* Rapid Ride *cough*
Posted by Chris B on October 12, 2012 at 3:13 PM · Report this
Will in Seattle 4
@3 yeah, but if you're not in the RR zone, you're slower. If I wanted to go N-S it would be great. But anyone doing NE-SW or SE-NW that doesn't go thru downtown is SOOL.
Posted by Will in Seattle on October 12, 2012 at 3:29 PM · Report this
Fnarf 5
Building stadiums for sports teams is always such a great deal -- what could go wrong?
Posted by Fnarf on October 12, 2012 at 4:26 PM · Report this
Rotten666 6
Only a schmuck drives to a Yankee game. What a nightmare. Just like the newbies who say "meet me at the baseball bat". Where there are about 5000 people waiting to meet up with their friends.

Go Yanks!
Posted by Rotten666 on October 12, 2012 at 5:38 PM · Report this
Supreme Ruler Of The Universe 7
Tacoma Dome has its own rail station with access to local LINK, Sounder from Seattle and Amtrak.

Perfect for an NBA home.
Posted by Supreme Ruler Of The Universe on October 12, 2012 at 5:52 PM · Report this

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