Changes are coming to some very active roadways in Bayside.
This spring, the city’s Department of Transportation (DOT) will begin construction on a pedestrian safety improvement project in the Bay Terrace section of the neighborhood at the Corporal Kennedy Street/23rd Avenue corridor between 26th Avenue and Bell Boulevard. Community Board 7 voted in favor of the project in March 2017.
The project will result in the installation of two concrete curb extensions on 211th Street at 23rd Avenue and two concrete pedestrian islands and enhanced crossings on 23rd Avenue. Enhanced crossings consist of ADA-compliant pedestrian ramps and pedestrian warning signs, among other improvements.
The agency will also install parking lane lines along the Corporal Kennedy Street/23rd Avenue corridor between 26th Avenue and Bell Boulevard. This will visually narrow the roadway and create a 12-foot-wide travel lane, which will encourage drivers to slow down, according to DOT.
Prior to this project, the winding 2,500-foot stretch between 26th Avenue and 212th Street did not have any pedestrian crossings.
A DOT official presenting at the March 2017 board meeting told attendees the plan was a “pedestrian-oriented proposal to help make it easier for you to walk in your own neighborhood.”
According to Councilman Paul Vallone, the area has been in need of pedestrian safety improvements for years.
“Working with the DOT, community board and vocal community leaders like Yacov Pshtissky was paramount in securing these changes,” he said. “These improvements will greatly increase the safety of all pedestrians in this area and we will continue to work with the community and the DOT to determine if any further safety enhancements are necessary.”
Community activist Yacov Pshtissky said having safe crossings in the neighborhood is a priority.
“Working together with Council Member Paul Vallone and the Department of Transportation, we were able to make this a reality to ensure the safety of the Bay Club’s residents and the community of Bayside,” he said.
In September, a left-hand turn signal was established at 26th Avenue and Corporal Kennedy Street after years of community requests. The active intersection is located near the Clearview Selfhelp Senior Center, Bay Terrace Shopping Center and multiple co-op buildings.
Concerns about the area’s intersections were also raised at a town hall with Mayor Bill de Blasio last year, which took place at the senior center.