On Thursday night, the full board voted to reject the idea, asking the department to explore car-free zones in a different form or perhaps on a different street.
The argument in favor of the plan, said Ian Dutton, a community board member who is a pilot and says he has seen pedestrian-only streets work well in Europe, is that the vast majority of traffic on Prince Street is foot traffic, yet nearly all the street space is given over to cars.
Opponents of the plan, among them Sean Sweeney, executive director of the SoHo Alliance, say that creating more space for pedestrians would make the area even more of a destination for tourists, attracting more visitors and vendors, which would force existing traffic onto adjacent streets and destroy any last remnants of the neighborhood’s residential character.
Here is a New York Times story on the CB2 meeting regarding the Prince Street proposal. CB2 voted it down. I am not sure if this is a clear sign that pedestrian mall/streets are not wanted, but rather, neighborhood politics as usual.