You may not have noticed because you're an on-the-go New Yorker making things happen with your big city ambition and consistent failure to call your mother, but there is a desperate shortage of places to sit down and catch your breath in this town! Soon enough, that will be remedied, as the DOT today announced an ambitious plan to install 1,000 new CityBenches throughout NYC over the next three years. Take a look at the cool new design you'll probably be too busy to ever enjoy.
Designed by NYC-based industrial designer Ignacio Ciocchini, the CityBench provides comfortable seating with both backless and backed styles that are durable and require little maintenance, according to the DOT. Made from domestic steel and manufactured in the USA, the DOT says "these sturdy, attractive benches" will be installed at bus stops, in commercial districts and areas with a high concentration of seniors and persons with impaired mobility. And like the CityRacks bike racks, you can contact the DOT to request a CityBench near you.
The beauty of this is that the DOT is only paying 10% of the estimated $3 million cost of the program, while the Federal Transit Administration funding accounts for approximately 80%. Because Washington is rolling in it. Of course, that only adds up to 90%, which still leaves another 10%, which we're guessing will eventually be covered by a new "sitting tax."
At a press conference today, Lilliam Barrios-Paoli, who is commissioner for the city's Department for the aging, declared, "These 1,000 benches will go a long way to making the city even more age-friendly." Barrios-Paoli then triumphantly broke a bottle of champagne over the side of the new prototype bench and clambered on top with DOT Commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan as the two danced provocatively together to Jethro Tull's "Aqualung." [CORRECTION: Contrary to prior reports, there was no dance party or champagne, but we're told they did sit provocatively on one of the benches.]