Danish Architect/Planner Jan Gehl and Janette Sadik-Khan of the NY DOT recently prepared a report for New York City called "World Class Streets" (PDF here). It suggests that "a vastly disproportionate amount of space is allocated to parking cars than to public seating spaces." For example, Main Street in Flushing squeezes twice as many pedestrians into one-third of the space.
Even in a people place like Times Square, 89% of the space is devoted to cars and only 11% to people.
Gideon Shapiro writes at Streetsblog about the launch of the report:
Accusing city higher-ups since Robert Moses of asking only "how the cars can be really happy," Gehl said today's DOT has finally recognized that streets should accommodate a multitude of uses. "New York has wonderful, wide streets compared to other places," he told the audience. Thanks to these relatively spacious streets as well as unique urban density, cultural vitality, parks, and waterways, he said, "New York can have the best streets in the world."
via Twice the Volume, One Third the Space">Tom Vanderbilt
He is not the first to say "Streets are for People."
San Francisco Sunday Streets: "Streets are for People"
Streets Are For People: The Petition
Streets Are For Vegetables (and People )
NYC's Transportation Commissioner on Streets for People