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Weather: Expect sunshine with a high in the mid- to upper 80s. Tomorrow could bring heavy rain and flash floods.
Alternate-side parking: Suspended through tomorrow for Eid al-Adha.
The ambitious but contentious plan to improve bus traffic by banning nearly all cars on one of Manhattan’s most congested thoroughfares was supposed to start this morning.
But on Friday afternoon, a judge blocked New York City’s proposal pending an appeal. The plan would give Metropolitan Transportation Authority buses priority on 14th Street, along with trucks and emergency vehicles.
It’s the second time in two months that a court blocked the rollout of the plan. Hours after the judge’s decision on Friday, Mayor de Blasio said on Twitter that the city would continue to “fight to get this done for bus riders.”
Opponents of the project said the city would simply be directing cars onto side streets while making only marginal improvements on bus speeds.
Cars and buses often crawl along 14th Street, a crosstown route for about 21,000 vehicles a day.
In a shift from earlier years, policymakers across the country are testing the idea that public transit users and cyclists should have priority on public roads, rather than motorists. My colleague Winnie Hu wrote that it was “a moment of reckoning — and, cars, which once had absolute hegemony over the streets, are losing.”
Some supporters and opponents of the plan agree on at least one thing: It could be a lot better.
What is the city’s plan for 14th Street?
🚌🚚🚑 Only buses, trucks and emergency vehicles would be allowed to drive through the heart of 14th Street, between Third and Ninth Avenues.
🚗🚙 All other cars, including taxis and other for-hire vehicles, on that part of 14th Street would be allowed to drive only a block or two. They would then need to turn at the next available right, according to the city’s Transportation Department.
⏰ These rules would be in effect from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily.
🚫⬅️ At all times, left turns would be banned (except for M.T.A. buses at certain locations).
🗓 This was supposed to be part of an 18-month pilot program; in the future, the city could have made the changes permanent.
This could be a model for other congested streets.
Gersh Kuntzman, an editor at Streetsblog, said that he supported the plan and that similar strategies could be used citywide.
“The ramifications of this will be far-reaching and hopefully benefit transit users in many congested corridors: Flushing, Queens; Jamaica, Queens; crosstown Manhattan; Jay Street in Brooklyn,” Mr. Kuntzman said. “All of these areas are desperate for transit that works and fewer privately driven automobiles.”
If the plan goes into effect, 14th Street could have fewer cars. But nearby streets might see an increase in traffic.
Arthur Schwartz, a lawyer representing block associations that oppose the plan, says the city is not doing enough to reduce car traffic.
He noted that cars would simply use other streets, likening the 14th Street plan to “cleaning the drug dealers out of one park and pushing them into another park.”
If the plan moves forward, Mr. Schwartz, a longtime resident of the area, estimated that on his street “the number of cars is going to go from 170 an hour to 350.”
Mr. Kuntzman also acknowledged the plan could be better.
“As livable-streets activists, we are also concerned that there are too many cars going through residential neighborhoods,” he said.
He added that he wanted the city to “engage in car reduction strategies to make the roadways livable for all.” For starters, he suggested charging $1,000 annually for curbside parking.
Still, Mr. Kuntzman said he supported the 14th Street plan because “the top priority for the city’s public space — i.e., the roadways — is to move the most number of people in the most efficient manner, and, of course, that manner is transit.”
From The Times
Before his jail suicide, Jeffrey Epstein was left alone and not closely monitored. (Read more about the death of Mr. Epstein, and why the sex-trafficking investigation that had centered on him may not be over.)
In an echo of the Flint, Mich., lead crisis, Newark is offering bottled water.
A lesson for Equinox and SoulCycle: Even sweat can be political.
Apple transformed Central Park into an augmented reality gallery.
[Want more news from New York and around the region? Check out our full coverage.]
The Mini Crossword: Here is today’s puzzle.
What we’re reading
A 52-year-old cyclist in Brooklyn was fatally stuck by a car yesterday. He is the 19th cyclist killed so far this year in the city. [amNew York]
Mayor de Blasio campaigned for president in Iowa over the weekend. He did not draw a large crowd. [New York Post]
The city could be behind schedule on plans to install GPS devices on school buses. [The City]
About 350 people convicted of misdemeanor marijuana crimes will have their offenses hidden from public criminal records. [Wall Street Journal]
Coming up today
At an open lab at the Museum of the City of New York, learn about the city’s water and participate in a hands-on experiment. 11 a.m. [Free]
Kristen Arnett discusses her new novel, “Mostly Dead Things,” at the New York Public Library’s main branch in Manhattan. 6:30 p.m. [Free]
Take the family to see “The Incredibles 2” at the Astoria Park Lawn in Queens. 8:15 p.m. [Free]
— Derek Norman
Events are subject to change, so double-check before heading out. For more events, see the going-out guides from The Times’s culture pages.
And finally: Memphis joins in Harlem’s party
The Times’s Nefertari Elshiekh writes:
Memphis and Harlem are over 1,000 miles apart, but they share a love of soul music and soul food. So, for Memphis’s bicentennial and the 45th anniversary of Harlem Week, the places will celebrate in New York City, together.
Harlem Week, which began as a one-day tribute to the Upper Manhattan neighborhood in 1974, now runs more than a full month — this year, from July 28 to Aug. 31 — and encompasses more than 110 events.
Some call it “the world’s longest week.”
“The residents of Harlem proudly stick out their chests during the Harlem Week celebrations as the world acknowledges and pays tribute to the important contributions that Harlem has given to our nation and beyond,” Lloyd Williams, president of the Greater Harlem Chamber of Commerce, said in an interview.
When Harlem Week began, Mr. Williams said, the area was “in the doldrums with despair and little hope.”
“We created a more positive way of looking at our community,” he added.
The festivities celebrating both Harlem and Memphis start today and continue through Sunday. Among the activities are:
This week, Sylvia’s, Melba’s, Lucille’s, Dinosaur Bar-B-Que and Whole Foods Market are offering food from both places as part of “A Taste of Memphis and Harlem.”
On Thursday, a free concert includes performances by Keith “The Captain” Gamble Quintet, Division X, Suzann Christine and Memphis Jookin.
On Sunday, Harlem Day will include live music, a children’s fashion show and the Upper Manhattan Auto Show.
It’s Monday — find a neighborhood to taste.
Metropolitan Diary: Baby steps
I had gone into Manhattan to see my obstetrician at New York Hospital, where I was to deliver my second child in a few weeks.
After leaving the hospital, I was at an intersection on York Avenue when I noticed a blind woman with a cane who was also waiting to cross the street. I offered her my arm, and she accepted. The light changed, and I guided her across the street.
We were trundling along companionably when she tilted her head toward me.
“You smell like a vanilla ice cream soda,” she said. I was completely taken aback.
After a few moments of awkward silence, we reached the other side of the avenue.
The woman leaned toward me again.
“That’s a compliment,” she said.
— Lies Chartier