Mayor Adams and Parks Concessions seek to provide three Deliveristas hubs using State funding secured by US Senator Chuck Schumer.

The approximately $1M will go to convert (3) abandoned* newsstands into an amenity for these workers who do not have access to regular facilities to charge cell phones or e-bikes, which they rely upon to perform their jobs.

One is planned for the Upper West Side. 

Originally reported as charging stations AND RESTROOMS, these now appear to be planned as a place to charge bike/scooter batteries, cell phones and escape the cold. (Attend the meeting to learn more)

Original reports erroneously sited the hub in Verdi Square. Verdi Square is a scenic landmark. Parks confirmed the UWS location is proposed for the defunct newsstand (pictured above) on the traffic island south of the historic 72nd Street Station house.

The pandemic has underscored the significance of open public space—it is limited, and must serve all. How do we as a community decide what is best? As it is, another kind of delivery worker–last mile couriers–are often sorting packages in the street and sidewalks. Should we continue to give up valuable open space to subsidize broken business models that shirk their own infrastructure in favor of bogarting public space? 

* To complicate incomplete reporting, the proposed location in the Bronx is occupied, and the vendor was going to be evicted, but they have since changed course thanks to community pressure, and will use a different newsstand.


Safety First, or Last? Why this Matters: 

First and foremost, this is an equity issue. These Deliveristas are humans who deserve the basics while performing their jobs. Agreed. But this proposal raises questions:

If it is an amenity on public land, why limit access to just delivery workers? Could this be open to all e-bike/e-scooter commuters?

Further, if City Council is cracking down on the charging and storage of these vehicles, and everyone from NYCHA to private buildings now have policies regarding e-bike charging, why are we inviting this public safety concern to our public parks?

What is the design? Will the footprint be limited to the existing structure or will bikes connect to it and further block the right of way? It is an issue worth exploring.

The Positives: 

  • Adaptive Reuse is Good! It is an environmentally conscious choice.
  • More Eyes on the Street would certainly please Jane Jacobs!
  • This proposal offers needed amenities to disenfranchised workers (…and the commuting public at large?

The Negatives:

  • Lithium Ion Batteries have a record for causing fires.
  • Concerns about maintenance–5G Kiosks are often a nuisance. Will these be monitored?
  • Why are taxpayers footing the bill for something that directly benefits the business models of Uber Eats, Seamless and others?

CB7 will host a Joint Transporation Committee with Parks and the Environment Meeting

Attend starting at 6:30 to learn more:

Discussion and potential resolution regarding the proposed e-bike charging station at West 72nd Street and Broadway.




Share This