New York City Department of Transportation (DOT) Commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan today announced record traffic-safety gains for Staten Island and major projects completed in 2011, the latest in a decade of unprecedented street-safety improvements, and reflecting the City’s sustained reduction in pedestrian injuries and fatalities. There were 11 traffic fatalities on Staten Island in 2011, a 58% decline from the 26 fatalities that occurred in 2010 and 65% fewer than in 2001. In addition to having the fewest traffic fatalities in Staten Island since detailed borough-specific records have been kept, 2011 also marked the lowest number of traffic deaths involving motor-vehicle occupants. These safety gains are a direct result of strategic campaigns to re-engineer streets so they are safer for pedestrians, especially seniors and school children. In addition to its ongoing Safe Streets for Seniors and Safe Routes to Schools programs, DOT launched an ambitious program to install pedestrian countdown signals (PCS) at high-crash locations throughout the city, including at nearly 70 intersections along some of Staten Island’s busiest corridors like Hylan Boulevard and Richmond Avenue.
“In the classroom and on the street, our nonstop campaign to make our streets safer is making a real difference in the everyday lives of New Yorkers,” said Commissioner Sadik-Khan. “We must continue taking aggressive steps to retain these hard-won safety gains and will continue to work with the borough’s communities and elected officials to make our streets even safer for all Staten Islanders here and across the city.”
In addition to installing PCS at traffic hotspots throughout the borough, DOT completed traffic-safety projects at several locations in 2011, including:
- Hylan Boulevard and Steuben Street: DOT implemented a protected only left-turn phase along this heavily used intersection to enhance safety and optimize traffic flow. DOT also extended the eastern median, adding bell bollards and installing PCSs to enhance safety for pedestrians.
- Slosson Avenue/Todt Hill Road from Lightner Avenue to Tillman Street: Along the high-crash corridor of Slosson Avenue, DOT completed a comprehensive safety redesign that included the installation of guard rails and markings, as well as the retiming signals to calm traffic and boost safety, especially for those heading to and from nearby schools on Victory Boulevard. There are plans to reconfigure the roadway at Windsor Road to further build on this project’s goal of creating safer streets.
- Veterans Road and Arthur Kill Road: With no sidewalks on the north side, Veterans Road West proved challenging for pedestrians, especially those walking from the nearby retirement facility to a shopping center on Mohr Street. Given the roadway’s wide-travel lanes and low traffic volumes, DOT installed 407 feet of safer space for pedestrians with a temporary sidewalk demarcated with paint, flexible delineators and markings that established a connection to an existing midblock sidewalk.
- Installed pedestrian countdown signals at nearly 70 wide intersections along Hylan Boulevard, Bay Street, Richmond Avenue, Father Capodanno Boulevard, Seaview Avenue, Richmond Terrace, Steuben Street, Lily Pond Road, Arthur Kill Road and Targee Street.
- Introduced innovative safety education and outreach tools to amplify DOT’s “That’s Why It’s 30” ad campaign. To increase awareness and understanding of the safety benefits of the city’s 30 m.p.h. speed limit, DOT rolled out temporary skeleton and traditional speed boards along corridors with histories of excessive speeding such as Richmond Avenue and Ada Drive, Henderson and N. Burgher avenues, Bloomingdale Road and Ramona Avenue, Foote and Grand avenues, Father Capodanno Boulevard and Seaview Avenue and Mosel and Osgood avenues. DOT also launched a traffic-safety workshop for elementary school students, including fourth graders at Staten Island’s P.S. 48. The students used speed detectors to observe speeding in school zones and completed math and other exercises to better understand the safety benefits of a 30 m.p.h. speed limit.
For more information about these and DOT’s other safety projects, please visit www.nyc.gov/dot.