De Blasio wants more slow zones, speeding enforcement

Credit: Bill de Blasio for Mayor
Bill de Blasio wants to make the city safer for pedestrians. Credit: Bill de Blasio for Mayor

Public Advocate and mayoral candidate Bill de Blasio at a Monday forum called for an expansion of the city’s slow zones and more police enforcement of speeding.

Noting one night two weeks ago when three pedestrians were killed on New York City’s streets, de Blasio unveiled the initiatives as part of his plan to reduce pedestrian injuries and deaths.

“There’s a growing frustration that despite some strong efforts, there isn’t a neighborhood in this city where the danger isn’t ever-present,” de Blasio said in a statement.

In his four-tier plan, de Blasio notes that cars going 20 mph only have a 5 percent chance of killing a pedestrian in the event of a collision. The Department of Transportation, he said, recently introduced 13 more 20 mph “slow zones,” but de Blasio wants four times the number of current zones.

The plan pointed out that more than 80,000 tickets were written for tinted windows last year, but only 19,000 for speeding violations.

“This is not because New York drivers do not speed,” the plan reads, citing speeding statistics from a study by Transportation Alternatives.

The plan asks for police to “track and prioritize” speeding enforcement, as well as drivers’ failure to yield to pedestrians.

De Blasio also aims to expand the Department of Transportation’s efforts to improve safety through design, calling for at least 50 more corridors to be redesigned. Wider streets, for example, could be narrowed to discourage reckless passing.

The plan also calls for the city to determine the number and location of speed cameras without state legislature approval so that the issue is “free from Albany politics.”

De Blasio’s plan did not give any indication as to how his proposals would be funded.

Follow Anna Sanders on Twitter: @AnnaESanders


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