After years of studies, town halls, and collecting comments, it seems that the City Department of Transportation’s plan to redesign the infamous McGuinness Boulevard boiled down to one man – Mayor Eric Adams.

Streetsblog NYC reports that Adams has asked the DOT to rethink their previously chosen plan to redesign McGuinness, a plan that meant whittling down the major thoroughfare from four lanes to two. Though Adams had previously shown support for safer street measures as a former borough president, it seems that he has now yielded to the desires of major campaign donors and local business owners, the Argento family, who have donated more than $15,000 to his election campaign.

The Argento family, who owns the major film and TV production company, Broadway Stages, faced criticism from the community after reporting from THE CITY revealed that several businesses and LLCs listed as opposing the redesign had ties to Broadway Stages. The company recently hosted a town hall at one of its soundstages with DOT representatives and elected officials alike. Though Broadway Stages advertised the event as open to the public, several activists from an oppositional group were barred from entering the property, despite previously registering online as requested.

The meeting at Broadway Stages. Image: Julia Moak.

Aside from the Argento family, Streetsblog NYC reports that “Ingrid Lewis-Martin, one of the mayor’s closest advisers, also railed against the plan, according to the officials, who requested anonymity to share internal deliberations.” 

In June, the New York Times reported that Lewis-Martin’s activities as an Adams advisor “raised ethical concerns, including her work to boost the mayor through political action committees funded by donors with business before the city.” Lewis-Martin has also fought against other Open Streets measures in Brooklyn. Streetsblog NYC also noted that the town hall meeting at Broadway Stages featured an appearance from Brooklyn Democratic Party leader and Assemblymember Rodneyse Bichotte Hermelyn, whose district does not overlap with North Brooklyn and to whom the Argento family has donated over $80,000 in campaign contributions. Hermelyn is a strong Adams supporter whose husband eventually resigned from a position in the Adams administration after questions arose about a potential conflict of interest.


Despite the mayor’s apparent change of heart, Assemblymember Emily Gallagher stated on Twitter that neither she nor any other North Brooklyn elected official had been contacted by the Mayor’s office or the City’s DOT. State Senator Julia Salazar, who represents parts of Greenpoint, Williamsburg, and Bushwick, also pushed back against the Mayor’s decision on Twitter. 

It is unclear what the next steps for the redesign are. Adams called for “alternatives” to the plan, though this plan’s particular iteration was chosen after considering a number of options. The DOT previously stated its intentions to start work on the project later this year.

Join the Conversation


  1. Also protected bike lane and entrance to the bridge from provost would make a lot of sense. Push the bike traffic onto the already safer side streets.

  2. Disappointing that you are simply repeating an anti Argento narrative when this story should take the time to look at how the community is legitimately divided. By accepting one side’s rhetoric “ they are the only ones interested in safety” you miss all those regular folks who say make the road safe ,which could get everyone’s support if you focus on it .Hint: why can’t we have full bike lanes and keep our car lanes and get safety ? .Sad to see Greenpointers “out of its healing role and not doing the foot work that would show you how many regular everyday Greenpointers oppose the plan as proposed .,Why not leave Argento out for once along with Transportation Alternatives and Mutual Aide and talk to the many real Greenpointers who have a real difference of opinion on how to make the road safer ?

    1. Agreed Neil. I’m extremely disappointed in Greenpointers one-sided reporting on this. I’ve lived in the hood for 20 years, and I have relied on Greenpointers to be a source of unbiased local news. Sadly this reporter seems to be extremely biased. Many, many locals disagreed with the proposed plan—many of who do not speak English, or are older and are not on social media to join the banter and sign the petitions. TA and NBMA unfortunately have local officials in their pocket.

  3. So this journalism is just regurgitating steetsblog whining and ignoring the locals that don’t want it either.
    Activists complaining don’t even live here.

  4. Almost 6,000 signatures from actual local residents in 6 months VS 2 years of signatures based on “Safety” and trying to sneak this plan past everyone by the Make McG Safe cult funded by Lyft and Uber. Tell the truth Greenpointers cmon now

  5. Thank you for the solid reporting Greenpointers; a large/last minute fundraising effort (i.e. the Orange/Keep McG ‘safe..’ vans seen all over Greenpoint past few weeks), mass produced signage, and (more importantly/troubling) hired staff eliciting/pushing signature pages worked to stall this project. A lot of money driving this…

    Where did this funding arise? The article explains it quite well.

    Opposition to this highway is just, for so many reasons. Keep up the fight!

  6. Actual Greenpointer here who participated in the DOT planning sessions on zoom going back to 2021. I can tell you that local residents like me actually want this redesign to happen. The real folks that don’t have tended to be the same folks that don’t like how Greenpoint has changed due to gentrification. It’s fear based, stoked by self serving companies like the garbage trucks that have killed many cyclists over the years. I for one care most about my bike commute to work in LIC and would rather not put my life at risk entering traffic with zero bike lane and riding against traffic to get on the Pulaski. The plan is sensible…I’m also a frequent driver and don’t mind the slowdown for safety.

  7. Why didn’t you post this trash article, which totally dismisses the 6700 greenpoint residents and 180 businesses that opposed the redesign to your instagram? Afraid of the comments section? Do better greenpointers.

  8. This is just a rehash of the Dyckman bike lane fiasco. Infrastructure should not be decided entirely by locals, since they can’t appreciate the larger view. They also are not engineers and might be entirely wrong. The political corruption angle also cannot be ignored.

    Try it as a pilot, see if one lane smooths traffic and has adequate capacity, and then if so make it permanent.

  9. This reads more like a biased opinion piece rather than “News”.
    I would like to see an actual report on how this is dividing our neighborhoods, and gives voice to both sides.
    The ‘Us’ and ‘Them’ attitude is making life-long democrats reexamine who they will vote for in the future. This is part of a bigger story.
    Everyone wants safety on McGuinness Blvd, But a large percentage of the local voting residents feel like they have been railroaded and their voices ignored. That’s not democracy.
    Local elected officials should have done a better job from the beginning to bring everyone together to find the right solution, not just the people who follow them on instagram.

  10. Obviously something needs to be done about McGuiness, but I agree the answer doesn’t seem so simple.

    I was in favor of the redesign, but I have to admit the idea of going down to two lanes gives me pause. I mean, it’s already such a heavily trafficked road. It seems pretty likely that would just back up the traffic, no? Are they operating under the assumption people will just take alternative routes? I don’t see that happening.

    I don’t know what the right answer is. But if these are the same people that thought the Meeker avr redesign was a good idea, I question how much time they actually spend on these streets.

    1. Your comment just summed it up in a nutshell Brian, When one actually thinks about the implications down the road, (literally), it is hard to understand how the logic will work, Where does the traffic go ? It’s all posturing to assume cars stay on the BQE or LIE. A large percentage of the “Cut Through” traffic is traveling from one neighborhood to the next one over. You only have to cross either of the bridges that are accessed by McGuinness to see how industrial they are. The traffic will be continuously backed up, as will the side streets with drivers trying their best to avoid McGuinness.

      I desperately want the Blvd to be safer for people on foot and people on wheels, but this current plan will wreak havoc, confusion and derision for years to come. There has to be a more sane solution.

  11. I’ve lived here for 15 years and I’m conflicted. Wish we could just dig a 4 lane tunnel for cars & trucks. Leave pedestrians & cyclists at street level. Everyone happy.

  12. Wow Greenpointers, this is poorly done. This “article” is just a cut and paste of a totally biased spin from so-called “reporters” who don’t actually do any real journalism – they just type up talking points from one side.

    A real journalist would point out the DOT’s own report says 19,000 vehicles PER DAY need to be diverted off McGuinness for this road diet to work with some of that going to side streets…

    And would report that 1000s of actual Greenpoint residents are worried this plan will make those residential side streets so much LESS safe.

  13. At 37 years old, I’m a lifelong resident born and raised in Greenpoint. Everyone that I have spoken to who grew up here is opposed to this plan and not because we are scared of change or gentrification. I am an avid cyclist who has enough common sense to know that you bike down side streets to travel north and south through the neighborhood. Also as a lifelong resident I have seen firsthand the congestion we have with vehicular traffic which would only get exacerbated by this proposal. And wouldn’t pushing northbound and southbound traffic to adjacent side streets where you have a denser residential populace compared to McGuinness make those unsafer and put people at risk for injury ? I’m happy to debate further on this topic.

  14. It is not only a safety issue misunderstood for decades.
    We have serious air quality , perhaps one of the worst in the city + superfund sights , water treatment plant and yes movie studios. Over 100 trucks just idling away for hours.
    We need to change much.

  15. The Argento family are doing what they have to do to protect Their business. It’s tragic for decades ago it was welcomed.
    I think it’s a an ethical mistake to oppose changes in our neighborhood so to say.

  16. In todays world, we all need to peacefully co-exist., motorists, cyclists and pedestrians and also the added addition of electric vehicles (scooters, bikes etc)..
    I do believe the McGuinness Blvd project isn’t and shouldn’t be political. It should be about safety.
    Motorists are the only group that are held to traffic rules and regulations, I personally have been passed up by a scooter that was in the bike lane while driving on Greenpoint Ave. (was this safe), Before the reconfiguration happens other issues need to get corrected, stop the double parking, give driving curtesy to each other. The other adjustments that have been introduced over the last several years obviously aren’t working, motorists know that extended time has been added for pedestrians to cross, so they go through the yellow/red lights.
    If I understand the reconfiguration, correctly, I also don’t believe it will be any safer than it is now and I believe it will be worse. As I understand it, the bike lane will be where parking is currently, then a lane for cars to park, so pedestrians will have to. cross a bike lane (where cyclists don’t always stop for lights, they ride in both directions, make unexpected turns) then one lane of cars and continue in reverse for the other side. I have seen it work in other locations, but they kept the 2 lanes of traffic.
    They also don’t have the extra traffic build up from when the bridge opens.. What happens when P.S. 34 is dismissing and you have busses blocking Norman Avenue and people picking other children up
    I am a long time resident and to be perfectly honest, I do avoid McGuinness if I can.
    Cyclists have plenty of other options , they just want the easiest way.

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