New York City announces next wave of Vision Zero to make streets safer

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Tuesday, February 19, 2019
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Dave Evans has the latest on the Vision Zero program for New York City.

NEW YORK (WABC) -- Mayor Bill de Blasio has announced the next wave of streets and intersections being targeted for the Vision Zero program to make New York City safer for pedestrians, cyclists and drivers.

The plans use the latest crash data, showing that just 7 percent of the city's streets -- 424 miles -- are responsible for nearly half of all pedestrian fatalities.

By the end of 2019, the city will change traffic signals on all the newly added corridors to discourage speeding, and give pedestrians exclusive crossing time at 300 intersections to prevent crashes.

De Blasio said the new priority streets and intersections are the road map for future Vision Zero safety projects and enforcement, ensuring tools like speed cameras, police enforcement and re-engineering are applied where they'll save the most lives.

"We will never stop working towards our goal of Vision Zero and saving lives across the city," de Blasio said. "Using our data-driven approach, we have identified hot spots around the city that are driving the majority of traffic fatalities, and are implementing targeted plans there and across the city that will make our streets safer for all. After our success last year with the safest year on record, we will continue building towards a safer and fairer city for all."

In February 2015, the New York City Department of Transportation (DOT) compiled data on crashes, deaths and serious injuries on our streets to create the Borough Pedestrian Safety Plans. These detailed, data-driven plans provided a new road map for Vision Zero, by identifying the most dangerous areas, intersections and corridors in the city.

Since then, the administration has made these areas the focus of its Vision Zero efforts.

DOT has now addressed 90 percent of those intersections and 86 percent of the street-miles targeted in 2015, leading to a 36 percent drop in pedestrian deaths at these locations.

As part of the look back on first half-decade of Vision Zero and the first installment of borough plans, DOT evaluated which treatments to keep a focus on while adding several new actions for 2019.

The borough plans helped direct the $1.6 billion in Vision Zero resources to targeted areas: new engineering, safety projects, protected bike lanes and pedestrian head-starts; new education efforts, including work by Vision Zero Street Teams and visits to schools and senior centers; and new enforcement, including a record number of traffic summonses issued by NYPD officers and the addition of school-zone speed cameras.

Using crash data, new Priority Corridors were added to the new Borough Safety Plans, including:

--Bronx: Westchester Avenue (3rd Avenue to Bronx River Avenue), Boston Road - 3rd Avenue to Bronx Park East, Soundview Avenue - (White Plains Road to Bruckner Boulevard)

--Brooklyn: Linden Blvd (Flatbush Av to Sapphire St), 8th Avenue - (39th Street to 73rd Street), Surf Avenue - (Ocean Parkway to Atlantic Avenue), Bedford Avenue - (Manhattan Avenue to Flatbush Avenue).

--Manhattan: Columbus Avenue (9th Avenue to Morningside Drive), York Avenue - (Sutton Place to the FDR), 10th Avenue (West Street to 59th Street)

--Queens: Rockaway Boulevard (Eldert Lane to 3rd Street), 37th Avenue - (114th Street to Woodside Avenue), 21st Street (50th Avenue to 20th Avenue)

--Staten Island: Targee Street - (Van Duzer Street to Richmond Road), Bradley Avenue - (Watchogue Rd to Brielle Avenue), Lincoln Avenue - (Richmond Road to Father Capodanno Boulevard)

New Actions for 2019:

--Add exclusive pedestrian crossing time at every feasible intersection on all new Priority Corridors by the end of 2019

--Modify signal timing to reduce speeding on all feasible new Priority Corridors by the end of 2019

--Launch Integrated Data-Driven Speed Reducer Program (speed humps & speed cushions)

--Track Vision Zero Violations at the Priority Corridors, Intersections, and Areas

--Launch a High Visibility Enforcement Program on Priority Corridors

--Launch a targeted Corridor Outreach Program

--Launch a Driveway Safety program to address issues with vehicles crossing sidewalks

--Conduct a comprehensive study of senior pedestrian injuries

--Collaborate with the Business Integrity Commission to improve the safety of commercial waste fleets


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