DOT hosts virtual workshops to hear feedback from Queens residents on street makeover –

Pedestrian crossing the street at Queens Blvd. (Photo courtesy of DOT)

DOT website

The New York City Department of Transportation (DOT) heard from residents of Queens during a two-day New York City Streets Plan (NSP) workshop on Thursday, July 22 and Friday, July 23.

The DOT held virtual workshops for all residents of Queens to get their feedback on improving New York’s streets. Most of the participants gave priority to creating more space for cycle paths.

These workshops are the preliminary steps in DOT’s five-year plan to improve safety and accessibility. Over the next few months, the DOT will be drafting recommendations for presentation to the public and to city council in the winter.

The workshops had approximately 25 residents participating in each session. The DOT used breakout rooms to ask questions of the public about the types of streets they would prefer to see in their neighborhoods. The workshop also gave the public time to voice concerns about the safety of its streets. Most participants spoke of dangerous streets in their neighborhoods that need traffic lights or other interventions to reduce speeding.

Mark Flynn, a city planner at DOT, said the agency would prioritize safety with this street redevelopment plan. Flynn said the total number of road fatalities has declined over the past decade – although there was a slight increase over the past year.

“It’s a pedestrian city, pedestrians still account for the majority of fatalities, so we absolutely have to put pedestrian safety first,” said Flynn. “There are all these different users of our streets, we have to think about all of their individual needs and concerns. But how can the interactions between motor vehicles and people who walk or cycle be reduced? “

Flynn also said consistent cycle paths will be reviewed as the plan is finalized.

State Senator Joseph Addabbo said his office has received calls from residents wanting to change streets.

“Every neighborhood is different, so there is no one-size-fits-all solution to the problems we face,” Addabbo said. “These workshops are the perfect way for people to let DOT know exactly what they would like to see in their communities.”

The second series of virtual workshops will take place in September and October.

More information on the DOT plan and a suggested schedule can be found at their website. Residents can also take the interactive survey express their ideas on where the funds are going and how they should be spent.

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