In spite of a recession and foreclosure crisis, the mayor presided over a boom in residential construction, encompassing everything from new aeries for the rich in Manhattan to disappearing vacant lots in the South Bronx. New York has added 40,000 new buildings since he took office, and the census counted an additional 170,000 housing units in 2010, up from 10 years earlier, more than any other city. Neighborhoods with the most growth: post-9/11 downtown; the West Side from Chelsea to Lincoln Square and Central Harlem in Manhattan; the Rockaways, Long Island City and Flushing, Queens; Williamsburg, Bushwick and Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn; the South Bronx.
Turf War Over Asphalt The mayor fought a war of attrition with the automobile. He sought to transform bicycling from a recreational activity into a real alternative to cars. By 2013, the city had added about 450 miles of bike lanes carved mostly from the city's roadways. Some curbs and medians were installed to separate pedalers from cars, but many of the lanes were demarcated simply with painted asphalt, much as blue paint divided automobiles from pedestrians along sections of Times Square and Broadway. Mr. Bloomberg lost his most ambitious offensive against cars when the State Legislature defeated his plan for “congestion pricing” in 2008, but he doubled down on biking with a popular bike-sharing system this year.