Governor Andrew Cuomo is crowing today about the state’s new smartphone app that allows users to get real-time traffic and construction updates right on their cell phones.
The idea behind the app — aside from Cuomo’s using it to boast all of his “New York Works” projects under the guise of a helpful way to avoid all the travel delays they’ll ultimately cause — is to give people a heads up before they hit trip-ruining traffic issues.
There is one minor (major) issue with the gov’s prized app: you can’t use it while you’re driving!
Thanks to New York’s draconian “texting while driving” laws, it’s pretty
much against the law to even touch a steering wheel and a cell phone at the
same time — even if it’s to check a state-run travel app.
Regardless, Cuomo is pimpin’ the app (read: “New York Works”) — and pimpin’ it hard. .
“Through our NY Works program, we are going to invest billions of
dollars in infrastructure projects across the state that will create
thousands of new good jobs and rebuild our states gaining
infrastructure,” Cuomo says. “With summer just beginning, it is
important that drivers stay updated on these projects so they know of
any traffic tie ups or backups before they get on the road. Upgrades to
our 511 system and the new PSA will make it even easier for New Yorkers
and our visitors to travel smarter and more efficiently, whether they
are heading to work or on vacation. I encourage travelers to make use of
this helpful service.”
If you’re not already in the car — ya know, when traffic updates would come in most handy — the gov’s 511NY overhaul could be somewhat helpful.
Below is a description of 511NY, compliments of Cuomo’s office:
511NY is New York State’s official traffic, travel, and transit
information source. The 511NY site and mobile app offers free, 24/7,
statewide real-time traffic and transit information for all of New York
State. It also offers a transit trip planner, camera views, as well as
weather alerts and forecasts. New features available at — www.511ny.org —
will include additional mobile app features, bridge and border crossing
times, new notifications on the home page, and an interface that is
easier to navigate. In addition, the new 511NY site will enable New
Yorkers to personalize their maps with My511NY, which allows users to
save familiar routes so that they do not have to repeatedly search for
updates on the same route.
In any event, we’ll be sure to pull off to the shoulder whenever we need to touch our iPhone to check on upcoming traffic via-511NY’s mobile app (who are we kidding — no we won’t).