2018-02-28 / Front Page

Improving Pedestrian Safety

Announce Mid-Block Crosswalks On Steinway St.


Council Member Costa Constantinides (at podium), Department of Transportation (DOT) Queens Borough Commissioner Nicole Garcia (front, r. of Constantinides), and members of the Steinway Astoria Partnership, including board Chair Tony Barsamian (back, l. of Constantinides) and President Kevin Foley (back, r. of Constantinides), announced that the first phase of Constantinides’ proposal to reinvest in Steinway Street will be implemented. They were joined by Assembly Member Aravella Simotas (front, l. of Constantinides), District Manager Florence Koulouris and Steinway merchants. 
Photo Vinny DuPre Council Member Costa Constantinides (at podium), Department of Transportation (DOT) Queens Borough Commissioner Nicole Garcia (front, r. of Constantinides), and members of the Steinway Astoria Partnership, including board Chair Tony Barsamian (back, l. of Constantinides) and President Kevin Foley (back, r. of Constantinides), announced that the first phase of Constantinides’ proposal to reinvest in Steinway Street will be implemented. They were joined by Assembly Member Aravella Simotas (front, l. of Constantinides), District Manager Florence Koulouris and Steinway merchants. Photo Vinny DuPre Council Member Costa Constantinides, Department of Transportation (DOT) Queens Borough Commissioner Nicole Garcia, and members of the Steinway Astoria Partnership announced on February 22 that the first phase of Constantinides’ proposal to reinvest in Steinway Street will be implemented. They were joined by Community Board 1 and Assembly Member Aravella Simotas. Street safety improvements, including three new midblock crosswalks and traffic signals, will soon be installed on Steinway Street from 30th Avenue through 34th Avenue. These enhancements aim to improve pedestrian safety for thousands of people who shop on this major commercial corridor every day.

There are currently no mid-block crossings along Steinway Street, where blocks can stretch up to 1,000 feet long. A shopper who wants to cross between two stores midblock by using the crosswalks at the end of the block could have to walk over 500 feet to reach the nearest crosswalk. While observing Steinway Street, DOT counted hundreds of pedestrians crossing midblock. The distance between the nearest crosswalks and the hundreds of pedestrians crossing Steinway Street make these midblock crossings an important enhancement to this already vibrant commercial heart of Astoria.

The addition of these mid-block crosswalks will calm car traffic and provide additional opportunities for shoppers and pedestrians to walk between stores, making Steinway Street safer and more conducive to commerce. These measures will bring economic and safety benefits to countless businesses on this major commercial corridor.

In addition to the traffic signals and midblock crosswalks, enhanced safety treatments for each crossing are also proposed. These safety treatments will include painted curb extensions and planters, which shorten the crossing distance while elevating the aesthetics of the streetscape.

Constantinides said, “These traffic mitigation measures will greatly improve the Steinway Street experience for pedestrians, shoppers, and small business owners. If the street is safer and easier to cross, shoppers will be able to walk between stores more safely. Thank you to DOT Queens Borough Commissioner Garcia and the Steinway BID for their partnership on this important public safety issue.”

“Steinway Street is on its way to becoming a safer, more inviting street for everyone, thanks to the leadership of Council Member Constantinides and the advocacy of the Steinway Astoria Partnership,” said Nicole Garcia, DOT Queens Borough Commissioner. “New, signalized crosswalks, markings, signs and other treatments at key points shorten the distances between crossings, making it easier for pedestrians of all ages to cross safely, shop and explore one of the borough’s most vibrant and exciting commercial corridors.”

Marie Torniali, Executive Director of the Steinway Astoria Partnership, said “The Steinway BID is very excited to see these long-awaited, pedestrian-friendly improvements to the Steinway streetscape being implemented. The blocks on Steinway are easily the length of two city blocks and walking to either end is a chore. Mid-block crossings will make it easier and safer for shoppers and residents to cross the street. An added bonus will be that shoppers will most likely visit more businesses that they might otherwise overlook, which will aid our small business community. We thank Council Member Constantinides and DOT for making this happen.”

Assembly Member Simotas said, “It is very encouraging that Councilmember Constantinides’ proposal was so well received by the DOT; this is a case study in how government ought to work—for the benefit of community residents and businesses alike. Mid-block crossings are a great way to preserve and grow the appeal of Steinway Street, which still has untapped potential as a go-to destination for shopping, eating out or simply sharing a great cup of coffee with friends.”

This traffic mitigation plan is the first phase of Constantinides’ proposal, announced last year, to improve Steinway Street to make it safer and more conducive to commerce.

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