NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — A city pilot program to make life easier for New Yorkers has instead had some people suffering instead.
The owners of several small businesses say they’re struggling to make ends’ meet because the city wants to clear the curb. Some have called it a crisis.READ MORE: 14 Injured, 1 Critically In Crash Involving Bee-Line Bus In The Bronx
“Since they came into effect we lost a quarter of business,” said Harry Kucevic, owner of Prospect Heights Pizzeria. “This is the worst period for us.”
Others say it’s affected business by as much as 50 percent. Many mom and pop shops have been open for years but fear they won’t last after the Department of Transportation cut off parking and deliveries during rush hour in three busy areas across the city.
The “Clear Curbs” pilot program, meant to relieve traffic, implemented no standing rules from 7 to 10 am and 4 to 7 pm in Brooklyn on part of Flatbush Avenue, along Roosevelt Avenue in Queens, and a zone between 45th and 50th Streets in Midtown Manhattan.READ MORE: CDC: 2 Connecticut Counties Now Considered High COVID Transmission Areas
The program is scheduled to end in September, but in the meantime business owners and people in the area wonder how much the program has actually helped ease congestion.
CBS2 asked DOT Commissioner Polly Trottenberg about it.
“We’ve looked at taxi speed and bus speed data and we can clearly see we’ve reduced congestion in those corridors,” said Trottenberg.MORE NEWS: Man Accused Of Lighting New York City Outdoor Dining Structures On Fire
The DOT wouldn’t provide data on Trottenberg’s claims, and city leaders have not said if they’ll continue the program after the pilot period ends.