Biography of Commissioner Weinshall
Iris Weinshall was appointed Commissioner of the Department
of Transportation (DOT) in September 2000. Under her leadership
the department has made the city's streets and sidewalks safer
for the millions of pedestrians, cyclists and motorists who
share New York's public spaces. She has also taken important
steps to address congestion, improve traffic flow and better
maintain the city's aging infrastructure.
Along Queens Boulevard, for example, the department significantly
reduced pedestrian injuries and fatalities by slowing traffic,
changing traffic signal timing and adding new signage and
pedestrian fencing. During Commissioner Weinshall's tenure,
pedestrian fatalities in New York have fallen to their lowest
level since 1910.
To enhance traffic flow in the city's most congested area,
Midtown Manhattan, Commissioner Weinshall and Mayor Bloomberg
announced the 2003 THRU Streets Program. This program, which
prohibits turns off of designated streets between 3rd and
6th Avenues, has reduced cross-town travel times by 25% and
increased vehicle speeds by 33%.
Over the past 5 years, the department has also taken important
steps to rehabilitate and better maintain the city's bridges
and roadways. The nearly $3 billion rehabilitation of the
city's East River Bridges is nearing completion and, thanks
to incentives clauses for contractors, much of the work has
been completed ahead of schedule. Also, in 2005, DOT filled
a record 260,000 potholes and was able to respond to pothole
complaints reported to 311 in 4 days, on average.
In addition to her role as DOT Commissioner, Commissioner
Weinshall was appointed by Mayor Bloomberg to the Taxi and
Limousine Commission. In September 2003, Commissioner Weinshall
was appointed Special Transportation Advisor to the Mayor.
In that capacity, Commissioner Weinshall is responsible for
shaping a transportation strategy for the city and guiding
the Taxi and Limousine Commission in their pursuits.
Commissioner Weinshall is a graduate of Brooklyn College
and earned a Masters Degree in Public Administration from
New York University's Robert F. Wagner School of Public Administration.
A lifelong resident of Brooklyn, Weinshall has two daughters
and is married to U. S. Senator Charles Schumer.