Earlier this month we reported on the request by the Seward Park Co-op Board to add a mid-block crosswalk (and signal) on Clinton Street between Grand and East Broadway. The transportation committee of Community Board 3 voted for a resolution asking the Department of Transportation to study the situation. But there was a hitch at last night’s full CB3 meeting. Rabbi Y.S. Ginzberg, a community board member and a Seward Park resident, called the request “ridiculous.” He said there was “no reason for it,” because the automobile traffic on this particular stretch of Clinton Street is not very heavy, and there’s not that much pedestrian traffic.
At the committee meeting on June 10th, Lee Slater of the co-op board voiced concern that cars speeding along Clinton in order to make the green light at Grand Street, fail to notice people trying to cross in the middle of the block. He cited the death of a woman by a garbage truck a few months ago. CB3 ended up passing a watered down resolution, calling on the DOT to study the situation but removing language suggesting the community believes pedestrian safety is a problem on Clinton Street.
The Co-op had also asked for and received CB3’s support in reducing truck noise on East Broadway. The committee asked the DOT to look into posting signs on the street reinforcing the current law, which prohibits trucks from using the street as a “through” route. Last night, Rabbi Ginzberg said he agrees there’s a need to keep trucks from using East Broadway as a “through” street. But, he expressed fears that posting signs there would only encourage trucks to use Grand Street to get across town. Ginzberg said Grand is already snarled with traffic, due, in part, to the city’s new bike lanes and center islands. Other members of the CB3 Board pointed out that, like East Broadway, Grand is not a “through” route. Trucks heading to the west side are supposed to use Delancey or Houston streets. The bottom line: the DOT will look into the requested changes on both East Broadway and Clinton streets.