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Old Posted Feb 16, 2019, 4:43 PM
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Nouvellecosse Nouvellecosse is offline
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Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Nova Scotia
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Originally Posted by plutonicpanda View Post
Nice strawman there. Let me argue in the opposite direction: the rich are the only people who drive cars through Manhattan?

Even if that were true, then lets reaffirm that practice and make it even harder to drive so the poor have no option other than to be packed in like sardines should they wish to travel through NYC. Though depending on how your define "poor," I'd lump the middle class who by many reports are a paycheck away from poverty(that might be a bit over exaggerated but isn't far from the truth) who will also be adversely affected by this.

But with your logic, it's already expensive to drive and park in Manhattan, so why not make it harder? At that rate, let's give the money that car drivers are paying to drive through the city on top of the taxes and other associated costs to drive they already pay and give it infrastructure that won't benefit them and arguable make driving worse.

I fully support drivers paying for mass transit in a way where everyone pays for it like coming from sales taxes, property taxes, well, almost anything that isn't congestion pricing or tolling interstates.
First of all, I was asking a question and offering the opportunity to respond rather than jumping to conclusions. Regardless of what you assumed my intentions were, you should have responded in a neutral manner by simply clarifying your position rather than jumping to an attack as knee-jerk reaction. That type of response simply isn't rhetorically effective because the tone makes the response borderline unreadable to the other person.

The reason for my question is that NYC has long had the reputation as the only city in the US where practically everyone - even many of the reasonably affluent - use transit (at least in the central areas) due to the costs and logical challenges posed by the sheer density. Many cities have a difficult time attracting transit ridership and coaxing people out of their cars due to the speed and convenience offered by driving in lower density cities. This is the goal of many places because movement using public transit is more efficient than by private cars in urban areas, both in terms of the cost of infrastructure per mile of travel and in terms of the energy and land usage (to answer the question of why someone would want to further discourage car travel in a dense, congested area).

The main options transit advocates proffer to increase ridership are increasing the density / transit / pedestrian friendliness of the built form, and increasing the level of transit service available (and the areas covered). Generally both measures are needed in order to achieve success. NYC already has both factors and already has been very successful in attracting transit ridership to the point where most people can get around without private cars. Making it more difficult to get around by car in cities where people have no alternative would simply make things harder for people. But making it more difficult to use a harmful option when better alternatives exist and therefore incentiving the less harmful alternatives is good.

Now let me address the elephant in the room:

"Let me argue in the opposite direction: the rich are the only people who drive cars through Manhattan?"

You're arguing that people who aren't rich currently use cars in Manhattan while in the post I responded to you stated, "It does NOT work and only prices out the poor."

Either you're right in that it isn't only the rich who use cars in Manhattan and therefore it does price out a significant number of non-rich drivers (aka it works) or it doesn't work and everyone who currently drives in Manhattan is wealthy enough to just shug and pay the charge. How can it both be true that significant numbers of price sensitive people currently drive in Manhattan yet the charge wouldn't be successful in attracting them to a lower cost alternative like transit? Sounds like a case of wanting it both ways.
"The reasonable man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore all progress depends on the unreasonable man." - George Bernard Shaw
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