The Turn Calming program is a citywide effort to reduce left and right turn speeds and enforce safe turning behavior. This program is part of the Vision Zero initiative to eliminate traffic fatalities and reduce severe injuries.
NYC DOT began the program as part of the Left Turn Study Action Plan to address failure to yield crashes caused by left turning vehicles. NYC DOT’s Office of Research, Implementation and Safety manages the program which includes 408 intersections with turn calming treatments citywide (as of December 2019).
NYC DOT chooses locations for Turn Calming treatments by reviewing several criteria including crash injuries, lane configuration and effect on large vehicles’ turning movements. View a list of locations with Turn Calming treatments.
View an interactive map of Turn Calming treatments citywide (2016 to 2019), along with other safety information.
Turn Calming Treatments
Turn Calming treatments address intersections with problematic left and right turns, and may be installed at a variety of intersections such as:
Basic Hardened Centerline (Left Turns)
Installed where one-way or two-way road meets at two-way road
The Basic Hardened Centerline treatment constists of five pieces of rubber curb and bollards and/or rubber speed bumps installed on the centerline and extending at maximum of six feet into the intersection. Since 2016, this treatment has been installed at 260 locations, including West End Avenue and 96th Street in Manhattan.
Complete Hardened Centerline (Left Turns)
Installed where one-way road meets a two-way road
The Complete Hardened Centerline treatment includes five pieces of rubber curb and bollards and/or rubber speed bumps, “No Parking” markings and slow turn wedge/box markings coupled with flexible plastic posts. Since 2016 this treatment has been installed at 75 locations, including Grand Avenue and West Burnside Avenue in the Bronx.
Slow Turn Wedge (Left & Right Turns)
Installed where one-way road meets a one-way road
The Slow Turn Wedge treatment consists of “No Parking” markings as well as a marked slow turn wedge/box coupled with flexible plastic posts or rubber speed bumps. Since 2016 this treatment has been installed at 67 citywide locations, including 89th Avenue and 164th Street in Queens.
Bike Island Channelization (Left Turns)
Installed where one-way road meets a one-way with a protected bike lane
The Bike Island Channelization treatment is only installed adjacent to existing bike islands. It consists of a Bike Island Channelization box with flexible plastic posts or rubber speed bumps. Since 2017 this treatment has been installed at 30 citywide locations, including First Avenue and 30th Street in Manhattan
Left Turn Traffic Calming: Bike Island Channelization Video
In New York City intersections pedestrian injuries have decreased by 20% where Turn Calming treatments have been implemented, declining faster than nearby comparable locations. Additional results from Turn Calming locations:
- Median left turn speeds have decreased by 54.3%
- Average left turn speeds have decreased by 52.6%
- 85th percentile left turn speeds have decreased by 59.8%
- Maximum left turn speeds have decreased by 37.7%
- Median right turn speeds have decreased by 32.7%
- Average right turn speeds have decreased by 34.1%
- 85th percentile right turn speeds have decreased by 47.2%
- Maximum right turn speeds have decreased by 48.7%
Vehicles are making safer turns as well; the rate of crossing the double yellow line while turning has dropped by 78.9% for locations that have a treatment extending to the stop bar and 100% for locations that have a treatment extending all the way to the crosswalk.
2020 Program Planning
NYC DOT is currently planning Phase 5 of this program, selecting additional intersections for treatment installation across the city.