NYC Mayor Announces Street Safety Projects
Brighter lighting for crosswalks will be installed at 1,000 high-risk intersections and $550,000 will be spent to buy 120 handheld laser speed detection guns to be deployed to local police precincts, providing a third speed detection gun per precinct.
New York City, which had the fewest fire and traffic fatalities in its recorded history during 2016, will accelerate street redesigns and boost traffic enforcement by dedicating an additional $400 million during the next five years, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced Jan. 25. His proposed FY2018 budget will expand the city's five-year commitment to traffic safety to $1.6 billion, dedicating some $400 million in new resources for street redesign, street markings, lighting, and other engineering improvements while increasing the number of NYPD crossing guards and increasing the police department's capacity to crack down on dangerous driving.
Joining the mayor for the announcement in front of the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, at the intersection of Atlantic and Flatbush Avenues, which will be among the city's targets for major safety improvements in 2017, was Doren Johnson, a 16-year old LaGuardia High School student injured in a crash at that location two years ago.
"With three straight years of declining traffic fatalities in New York City that are strongly countering national trends, Vision Zero has already made a difference in saving lives," said de Blasio, "but we have said that we must always do more. Our proposed budget will allow us to keep kids safe around our schools and expand DOT's most effective efforts to make our streets even safer."
"As we further expand our commitment to Vision Zero, New York City has bucked national trends around traffic safety," said DOT Commissioner Polly Trottenberg. "With this new budget, we thank Mayor de Blasio for his continued strong leadership to continue that momentum in advancing the cause of safe streets. After three years of record progress on street redesign, we look forward to fulfilling the mayor's charge to do even more."
Vision Zero highlights from the FY18 Preliminary Budget include expanded capital funding for street safety reconstruction. In some cases, complete realignment of complex intersections or permanent safety improvements such as raised medians will be completed.
Brighter lighting for crosswalks will be installed at 1,000 high-risk intersections. Although only 13 percent of pedestrian travel occurs during darkness, approximately 40 percent of pedestrian fatalities occur then. This doubles the number of lighting upgrades DOT has performed since 2013.
And $550,000 will be spent to buy 120 handheld laser speed detection guns to be deployed to local police precincts, providing a third speed detection gun per precinct.
"It is investments like these that show how seriously New York takes ending traffic fatalities for good," said City Council Member Ydanis Rodriguez, chair of the Committee on Transportation. "With more funding for major capital improvements to troubled intersections and corridors, as well as for on-street markings and lighting, the city can better ensure the safety of all street users. I look forward to diving into details about this funding in our upcoming hearing on Thursday, January 26th. I want to thank Mayor de Blasio for doubling down on the city's commitment to achieve Vision Zero on schedule."