The commissioner of the New York City Department of Transportation, Iris Weinshall, will resign her post to accept a position at the City University of New York, she announced yesterday.
Ms. Weinshall, the wife of Senator Schumer, has been appointed vice chancellor for facilities planning, construction, and management at CUNY, where she will oversee a capital construction budget of more than $3 billion for the university's 23 colleges and professional schools.
In her seven years as commissioner of the Department of Transportation, Ms. Weinshall oversaw a $5 billion capital plan, supervised the construction of two new ferry terminals, and worked to improve congestion in Midtown Manhattan by instituting the THRU Streets Program in 2003. The program, which prohibits cars from turning into designated streets, increased vehicle speeds by 33% in some of the city's most congested areas.
"Whether through the challenges the city faced during and after September 11, two blackouts, or a transit strike that threatened to paralyze us, Iris Weinshall brought her leadership skills to bear and saw the Department through these difficult times," Mayor Bloomberg said in a statement. Ms. Weinshall also has served as special transportation adviser to the mayor since 2003.
"Her main accomplishment was stabilizing the DOT after it had been through a series of commissioners who were not there for a long period of time," the CEO of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, Elliot Sander, said.
Ms. Weinshall will begin her tenure at CUNY by overseeing a library restoration at her alma mater, Brooklyn College, and construction of a new facility designed by architect Renzo Piano for the College of Technology in downtown Brooklyn.
Ms. Weinshall will retain her seat on the Taxi & Limousine Commission's board and will serve as transportation commissioner through April 13.