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News

Controversial Rising Sun Flag Pedicabs Spotted in Central Park – The Korea Bizwire

Pedicabs adorned with the Rising Sun flag, a symbol linked to Japanese militarism, have been reported operating in Central Park, New York City. Professor Seo Kyoung-duk of Sungshin Women’s University highlighted the issue on social media after receiving multiple reports. Despite sending a protest email to the Central Park office last year, the pedicabs continue to circulate, raising concerns due to their association with historical aggression and conflict, particularly among Asian tourists. Seo has escalated the issue by contacting New York City authorities to address the controversial use of the flag and its impact on visitors.

For more information:

http://koreabizwire.com/controversial-rising-sun-flag-pedicabs-spotted-in-new-yorks-central-park/270251

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News

Broadway vs. Pedicabs – The New Yorker

This article discusses the growing issues in Times Square related to the use of music-blaring pedicabs. Tom Harris, president of the Times Square Alliance, has observed a rise in problematic behaviors by pedicab drivers, particularly around theatres. They are known to block streets, play loud music, and engage in predatory pricing, with some charging exorbitant rates. The NYPD recently seized seventy-seven illegal pedicabs in a sting operation.

Local businesses like the Glass House Tavern have complained about pedicabs causing safety issues and being rude to their staff. There’s a significant noise problem, with amplified music from pedicabs audible even during theatre performances, leading to complaints from Broadway actors and requests for stricter enforcement of regulations by city councilman Erik Bottcher.

The pedicabs often play music that clashes with the theatrical atmosphere, affecting shows like “The Cottage,” “A Beautiful Noise,” and “Gutenberg! The Musical!”. The issue is particularly problematic for shows like “How to Dance in Ohio,” which caters to audiences with sensory issues. Producer Fiona Rudin has expressed concern about the impact of loud pedicab music on these audiences.

Efforts to mitigate the issue include setting up barricades to move the pedicabs and attempts to get drivers to lower their music volume. However, compliance has been an issue. The article also highlights the story of Mustafa, a licensed pedicab driver who faces challenges due to unlicensed competitors and is considering leaving the business due to the hostile environment. The situation exemplifies the broader challenges faced in managing the bustling and diverse environment of Times Square.

To read more, visit the New Yorker Magazine website:


https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2024/01/15/broadway-vs-the-pedicabs

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News

Police Crack Down on Pedicabs; Dozens Seized and ‘Con’ Revealed – West Side Rag

This article discusses the current situation and challenges faced by pedicab drivers in New York City, particularly around Central Park and other tourist areas.

Pedicab Drivers in Central Park: A group of pedicab drivers was seen at the West 72nd Street entrance to Central Park. One of the drivers, a recent entrant to the business, expressed his aspiration to be an entrepreneur and his fear of potential targeting by law enforcement.

NYPD Operation Against Illegal Pedicabs: About a week before, NYPD officers conducted an operation in areas around Central Park, Rockefeller Center, Bryant Park, Times Square, and the Empire State Building. They seized 77 pedicabs, a moped, two speakers, and issued 100 summonses. The crackdown was aimed at illegal pedicabs.

Councilmember’s Call for Stricter Enforcement: Lower Manhattan Councilmember Eric Bottcher has been pushing for stricter enforcement against pedicabs. He highlighted issues like loud music from pedicabs and instances where tourists are excessively overcharged.

Pedicab Regulations and Licenses: New York City has about 850 pedicabs, the maximum number allowed under city licensing. Pedicab drivers need to renew their licenses annually and adhere to a strict set of bylaws. They must not use motorized or electrically powered vehicles and must display clear rate signs.

Issues with Overcharging and Loud Music: Some pedicab drivers reportedly overcharge customers significantly, leading to a lack of trust among customers towards all pedicab drivers. There have also been complaints about loud music played by some drivers, affecting communication and even disturbing nearby Broadway theaters.

Consequences of Non-Compliance: The fate of the seized pedicabs and the process for drivers to reclaim them were not clarified by the NYPD.

The article highlights the tensions between pedicab drivers trying to make a living, city regulations, and the need to maintain a fair and pleasant environment for tourists and city residents.

To read more, please, visit West Side Rag:


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News

77 Unlicensed Pedicabs Seized By NYPD Near Central Park, Midtown – Patch

The NYPD seized nearly 80 unlicensed pedicabs in Manhattan, including areas around Central Park, issuing over 100 summonses for violations near major landmarks. The crackdown also involved confiscating a moped and two speakers. The action comes in response to numerous complaints about pedicab noise and overcharging, particularly affecting Broadway shows and tourists. NYC Council Member Erik Bottcher highlighted the need for pedicabs to adhere to regulations, citing instances of excessive noise and exorbitant fares, with one case of a couple being charged over $500 for a 20-minute ride. Pedicabs are legally required to display their pricing clearly, but instances of overcharging have been a persistent issue.

For more information:

https://patch.com/new-york/central-park/nearly-80-unlicensed-pedicabs-seized-nypd-near-central-park-beyond

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News

77 Unlicensed Pedicabs Seized By NYPD – Gothamist

The NYPD seized 77 unlicensed pedicabs in Midtown Manhattan, including near major landmarks, as part of a crackdown on illegal operations. The operation also resulted in 100 summonses and the confiscation of a moped and two speakers. City Councilmember Erik Bottcher, representing Midtown, praised the enforcement action in response to numerous complaints about noise and overcharging by pedicabs. The crackdown highlights issues with pedicab regulations, particularly around the use of motorized pedicabs, which are currently illegal despite their popularity among drivers and customers for easing the physical strain of pedaling. Pedicab operators are calling for changes to allow motor-assisted pedicabs, similar to the legalization of e-bikes for delivery workers, to improve the sustainability of their business and reduce the risk of overcharging scams by unlicensed drivers.

For more information:

https://gothamist.com/news/nypd-cracks-down-on-dozens-of-illegal-pedicabs-in-midtown-manhattan

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News

Bottcher Takes Dead Aim At Loud, Scammy Pedicabs – Patch

Council Member Erik Bottcher is calling for increased oversight and regulation of pedicabs in New York City, particularly in the Theater District, Hell’s Kitchen, and Times Square, after receiving numerous complaints about their disruptive noise and unfair pricing practices. According to Bottcher, pedicabs are not only causing a nuisance by playing music loudly enough to interfere with Broadway shows but are also engaging in price gouging, with reports of tourists being significantly overcharged, including an instance where a couple was charged over $500 for a mere 20-minute ride. Pedicabs are legally required to display their pricing clearly, similar to taxis, yet there have been persistent issues with riders being overcharged. Bottcher has addressed a letter to the Department of Consumer and Worker Protection, the NYPD, and the Department of Environmental Protection, urging them to enforce existing regulations more effectively and to consider introducing new rules to combat these problems.

For more information:

https://patch.com/new-york/midtown-nyc/bottcher-takes-dead-aim-loud-scammy-pedicabs-hells-kitchen

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News

NYC Pedicab Driver Spits and Derides Trans Woman – NY Daily News

In Midtown NYC, a pedicab driver spat in a woman’s face and used a transphobic slur against her. The incident occurred at 5:55 p.m. on May 31 near Saks Fifth Avenue on East 50th Street. The driver, while transporting passengers, derogatorily referred to the 27-year-old victim as a “tranny.” Following an exchange of words between the two, the driver spat in the woman’s face and fled the scene, although the victim managed to record him on her smartphone. The Hate Crimes Task Force is actively searching for the suspect, and the public is urged to contact Crime Stoppers with any relevant information.

For more information:

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News

Broadway Eatery Glass House Tavern Targeted by Pedicab Drivers With Negative Reviews – Playbill

Glass House Tavern, a popular restaurant in the theatre district, faced a flood of negative Google reviews due to a dispute with local pedicab drivers. The conflict arose after the restaurant posted a sign detailing the pedicabs’ high pricing to deter their congregation outside the nearby Lena Horne Theatre, which led to aggressive behavior towards the restaurant’s staff. In retaliation, pedicab drivers seemingly coordinated to leave negative reviews on the restaurant’s Google listing, with many being flagged and removed for fraudulence. In response, Glass House Tavern called on its patrons for support, leading to an influx of positive reviews from fans and Broadway personalities, praising the restaurant for its ambiance and offerings, helping to counteract the impact of the negative campaign.

For more information:

https://playbill.com/article/broadway-eatery-glass-house-tavern-targeted-with-negative-reviews-following-dispute-with-pedicab-drivers

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Central Park Pedicabs

Central Park Pedicab Rides with New York Pedicab Services

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Government

New York City Pedicab Lottery 2022

On November 14, 2022, New York City Department of Consumer and Worker Protection Agency announced that the agency will accept applications for the 2022 pedicab lottery from November 14, 2022 to December 13, 2022.

All interested applicants can apply by submitting a completed application to pedicabs@dcwp.nyc.gov .