March, a transitional month between winter and spring, is well known for its winds. In large cities like New York, however, the wind can be accelerated by something called the Venturi Effect.
Tall buildings and straight, grid-like streets essentially create man-made canyons that affect how the wind moves through a city. Funneled through the buildings, the wind is constricted and forced to speed up. The same process is seen when you put your thumb over the mouth of a hose to create a choke point and make the water flow faster.
The Venturi Effect is named for Giovanni Battista Venturi, an 18th-century Italian physicist.