The city has drafted a plan to redesign the streets from 55th Street to 86th Street, making them safer for pedestrians and bicyclists, and smoother for drivers. The plan, which will be presented at a meeting Wednesday night at John Jay College at 6 p.m., is 98 pages long. A brief review of the recommendations revealed some highlights. Here they are, in handy bulleted form:
- Dangerous intersections should be redesigned with things like countdown clocks, and extended curbs that make intersections shorter. One intersection that could be shortened is at West 72nd Street and Riverside Drive.
- The city could create designated left turn lanes to improve pedestrian safety at major intersections like 66th, 79th and 86th Street.
- The city plans to add commercial parking zones in about 15 locations to keep trucks from double-parking when they have to make deliveries. This will cut about 30 spaces. The DOT’s parking study showed that on-street parking on the Upper West Side is already essentially 100% full for much of the day and this will presumably remove spaces for cars.
- Bicycle parking could be added at six locations, including Lincoln Square and 75th and Broadway.
- The city could remake medians (like the one in the photo above) so that they are wider and don’t make people walk around them and into the street in order to make the light.
We’ve posted a basic semi-readable map of some of the big changes below that you can click on to enlarge. If you have the stomach, read the whole report. It’s important!
Images via DOT.
I say BOO to turn-only lanes, wider medians, and especially to reduced regular street parking! Cars will swerve and merge to avoid turn-onlys, pedestrians are still going to step out in the street, and middle-class, non-garage drivers will suffer even more than they already do to find parking. Drivers looking for parking, by the way, only add to the volume of car traffic as they circle around and around looking for a space. BOO, BOO, and BOO!
I’m not in favor or left-turn only lanes. Everywhere in the country that I see them, drivers race through AFTER the left turn arrow turns red. I think that left-turn only lanes will be very bad for pedestrians.
Just look at the great job the DOT has done at 72nd Street and Broadway. Southbound traffic delays now regularaly extend from 70th Street to Citarella and beyond. And as LKN and Harriet have pointed out, these dedicated left turn lanes are a really bad idea.
Look, let’s face it. New York drivers ignore rules. The more rules there are, the more drivers will be feel compelled to show their power by flouting them.
Put in a left turn lane, and the more drivers there are who will race in the non-turn lane to cut ahead of those who are in it.
Extend the sidewalks to reduce the pedestrian crossing times, and the more drivers there are who will feel compelled to pull farther into the crosswalk to block them off, saving a milli-second or two from their car trip.
And so on. The best thing the City could do to improve pedestrian safety (short of banning auto traffic altogether, of course) would be to post signs everywhere *requiring* drivers to talk on cell phones all the time, and *prohibiting* drivers from using turn signals to announce a turn.
Or maybe it could enforce the existing rules. It would be so much safer and easier to cross at existing crosswalks if pedestrians didn’t have to be constantly careful of the driver making an unannounced turn while yakking away on a cell phone.
THE ONLY SOLUTION TO THIS IS …..MAYOR MIKE FOR A 4TH TERM SO HE CAN FINISH WHAT HE STARTED
Who is irresponsible enough to live in Manhattan and own a car and drive it around in Manhattan? I have no sympathy for those that demand that the city provide them with non-garage (i.e., city-subsidized) parking.
If you’re going to own a car in the city, at least own up to the costs.
Hear-hear to E’s post. If you can afford to live on the UWS, then factor in the real price of keeping a car in Manhattan, and stop polluting our streets with your crummy cars!!!!!