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Gotham Gazette

The Place for New York Policy and politics

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Uber

Uber

  • uberwav uber

    (photo via Uber)


    They may claim to be “doing the right thing” in their splashy campaigns, but for-hire-vehicle companies like Uber and Lyft are in New York courts right now fighting fairness -- when it comes to serving the city’s 99,000 wheelchair users.

    Whether you need to get to a job interview, a doctor’s appointment, or a dinner with friends, finding reliable and affordable transportation is a daily struggle if you use a wheelchair in New York City. The subway system -- with its tiny number of functioning elevators -- remains almost wholly inaccessible. Buses creep

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  • masud1

    Masud Chowdhury, the author


    As a longtime yellow taxi driver, I was proud to be among the first to drive one of the city’s wheelchair-accessible taxis, which are equipped to serve New Yorkers with disabilities. There are now around 2,000 accessible yellow taxis in New York City as the industry continues striving to become 50 percent accessible by 2020.

    But it might be impossible for taxi drivers like me to keep our accessible vehicles on the road if we are hit with high fees under a congestion pricing system designed to raise funds for mass transit repairs. While the

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  • accessible cab

    (photo via nyc.gov)


    The hustle and bustle of New York is a part of its identity: we New Yorkers are always on the move. Our officials must fight for equal access to transportation, but as those of us with disabilities know, accessible methods of travel are shamefully limited. This is why the Taxi and Limousine Commission (TLC) has apparently been negotiating with private for-hire car companies like Uber and Lyft on the issue of wheelchair accessible taxis for several months.

    This could have been an encouraging sign, but last week, it became clear

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  • alicia glen sharing cities summit

    Deputy Mayor Alicia Glen (photo: @DMAliciaGlen)


    City governments across the world are trying to adjust to and standardize their approaches to companies in the so-called sharing economy. With rapidly advancing technology, major financial investment, creative entrepreneurship, and little regard for the status quo, sharing economy companies -- such as Uber and Airbnb -- often catch government regulators unprepared and disrupt entrenched interests, leading to conflict. Government leaders are forced into difficult decisions, needing to

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  • uber protest

    an Uber protest (photo: @CPIsd)


    The following is an open letter from David Beier, president of the Committee for Taxi Safety to Commissioner Meera Joshi of the New York City Taxi & Limousine Commission:

    Dear Commissioner Joshi,

    In light of Uber's admission that

    albany leaders cuomo heastie flanagan et al

    Albany leaders (photo: Kevin P. Coughlin, Governor's Office)


    The pace has picked up dramatically in Albany, where lawmakers had avoided any major legislative decisions since passing the budget in April. With three days left in session, dozens upon dozens of bills are being introduced, amended, and passed at a fever pace. And while a couple of deals among the governor and legislative leaders have been announced on somewhat high-profile matters, thornier issues still remain unsettled and many bills are likely to only

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  • taxi TLC

    photo via the NYC TLC


    Uber’s New York City drivers continued to rally against the company last week at City Hall — and it was no coincidence that recent reports show most Uber drivers don’t like their jobs.

    In a new survey of Uber drivers published this month, less than half said they enjoy driving for Uber. Almost 40 percent of the drivers said they “strongly disagreed” or “disagreed” with the survey’s question about whether

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  • mta out of service

    Out of service (photo: MTA/Patrick Cashin)


    The denizens of Williamsburg and Bushwick have responded to news of potential multiyear L train closures with a mix of shock, despair, and irritation. People are talking through the alternatives: taking the G, J, and M trains; boarding the East River Ferry; or even (gasp!) riding the bus. Quite likely Williamsburgers will also summon a swarm of UberPools and Lyft Lines unlike any seen in our time.

    Hysterics aside, it’s unlikely that the MTA would do a full, year-long

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  • week in review bus readers

    photo: Stanley Kubrick via Museum of the City of New York


    Gotham Gazette's Week in Review, Friday January 15

    PHOTO OF THE WEEK: Governor Cuomo gives his State of the State address, via the governor's office

    andrew cuomo mario cuomo

    lander car wash workers

    Council Member Lander with carwash workers (photo: William Alatriste)


    There are more than 1.3 million freelancers working in New York City and with the help of the City Council, these workers may soon be afforded certain protections on par with full-time workers.

    Initially focused on wage protection and health benefits, Council members and advocates are also looking at legislation to expand

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