The 6 ½ Avenue in Midtown Manhattan is done!
According to New York City Department of Transportation Commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan, city officials installed new crosswalks to help to enhance the ones already in place. The new area is about a quarter-mile long and runs alongside 6th Avenue and 7th Avenue from 51st Streets to 57 Street. Now, officials say, pedestrians will be more visible. The crosswalks include new reflective markers and new stop signs so that traffic can stop at the cross streets. The spaces will now help to connect commercial and residential buildings, with the aim of bringing more accessibility to the area.
Officials are hoping that this addition will help to reduce the risks of pedestrian accidents. Before the Avenue was constructed, it was estimated that more than 1,000 pedestrians would cross through this area each and every hour. Until now, these pedestrians were forced to cross the busy roadways unprotected, through parked cars and busy vehicular traffic.
Our New York City pedestrian accident lawyers know projects like this, in areas with such dense traffic, are important in bringing down the number of traffic accidents, injuries and fatalities. Still, drivers are asked to be extra careful when traveling through this area. While it may be better equipped to protect our on-foot traffic, motorists still have to do their part to help ensure safety.
There are more than 500 areas in the city that are known as Privately Owned Public Spaces. These spaces have been constructed near ground level of newly-constructed buildings. The original spaces were built in the late ’80s and were not built to withstand and protect the pedestrian traffic of today. Now, with the new crossings, pedestrian trips will not only be shorter, but safer. They’re going to eliminate the need for on-foot traffic to go back and forth to the main avenues to get to midblock areas. Many of the new locations have extended sidewalks and even benches.
In 2010, there were more than 4,250 pedestrians who were killed in traffic accidents across the country. Many of these accidents happened on roadways just like this one, roadways that are designed solely for the use of fast-moving traffic and little regards for more vulnerable on-foot and bicycling traffic. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), there were more than 300 pedestrians killed in the state of New York in 2010, most of these accidents happening on the same kinds of roadways. With the construction of this new Avenue, transportation officials are hoping that they can shift some of the focus back on these important travelers and help to protect them along the way.
While the number of traffic accident deaths has dropped over the last 10 years, pedestrians still account for more than 50 percent of traffic fatalities in the city. Officials believe that there will be even more pedestrians in the area with this new and safer way to get around, but they’re also hoping that traffic improvements will make the area safer for all.
The Law Offices of Nicholas Rose, PLLC offers free consultations to accident victims. Call 1-877-313-7673 to speak with someone about your case and to discuss your rights today!
More Blog Entries:
More Slow Zones for NYC, Helping to Protect Pedestrians, New York Injury Lawyer Blog, August 26, 2012
Illegal Driving Causing Majority of Fatal Traffic Accidents in New York, New York Injury Lawyer Blog, August 14, 2012