It’s been almost 10 years since the World Trade Center attacks, and the National September 11 Memorial and Museum will finally open this fall. Which is great, except that now there’s this looming problem of people (or, let’s call them “tourists”) wanting to, you know, actually go see the Memorial and Museum. In person.
Tourists being what they are, they often tend to visit sites by bus, which makes area residents a bit irritable, buses being what they are (loud, stinking, traffic-hogs). So how can people actually see the site and honor the victims of the attacks while not annoying those who live on the “cobblestone residential streets” by clogging the neighborhood with “chartered fume-spewing double-deckers”?
The DOT hasn’t quite decided yet, reports the New York Times City Room blog.
Under one proposal, buses would be allowed to idle in a wide swath of streets that includes residential strongholds like Battery Park City, Warren, and Murray Streets in TriBeCa, and condo-heavy Greenwich Street. The idling zone would stretch south to the Battery and east into City Hall Park.
For various reasons, including pollution, congestion, and the typical New Yorker response of “Why is this our problem?” residents have not been open to such ideas. But the plan for buses remains, at least so far, perhaps with stipulations pushing for mass transit use and remote drop-offs. Eventually there are also plans for an underground garage. In the meantime, time’s a’ wasting. As City Room reports,
“The opening of the 9/11 memorial is less than 200 days away,” Mr. Stringer said. “It’s time for the Lower Manhattan community to start asking very pointed questions about traffic and congestion.”
Well, true. After all, a memorial that negatively impacts the people who live in the neighborhood surrounding it is just about as useful as a memorial that no one can actually visit.