Days Are Numbered for New York City’s Horse-Drawn Carriages

Incoming mayor says 'it's over' for the iconic rides

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Tourists in New York City are scrambling to take what may be the last of the iconic horse-drawn carriage rides through Central Park before the incoming mayor plans to ban the practice.

The rides have long been the target of animal rights activists who say the horses are mistreated, and Mayor-elect Bill de Blasio, who takes office Wednesday, said Monday that he will follow up on a campaign promise and shut the carriages down.

“It’s over,” he said at a news conference, the New York Daily News reports.

The carriages have been assailed by an array of critics, ranging from Miley Cyrus and Alec Baldwin to both leading candidates for mayor.

But horse-drawn carriage supporters have pushed back, arguing that the horses are well-cared for — including nine-hour maximum work days — and that the the alternative may be grim. The Daily News reported in October that if funds for the horses’ retirement are not raised, the roughly 200 animals could face slaughter.

[New York Daily News]