An accelerating problem on East 23rd Street
The following is an open letter to Council Member Dan Garodnick:
On the heels of a letter to you by a resident of Stuyvesant Town, Mr. Sanderson, which was published in the Town & Village, about unsafe conditions in the service lane, I would like to bring to your attention some very dangerous conditions a little bit north, on 23rd Street.
I have been a resident of Peter Cooper Village for many years. For a long time, 23rd Street was a quiet place. Not anymore. For the past few years, it has become a major access road to the FDR Drive. During the quieter times, before and after rush hours, 23rd Street from First Avenue down to the Drive, has a become a speedway for many cars and busses. If a device checking speed limits were to be set up, many vehicles would clock in at well over the 25 mile an hour speed limit, more like 40 to 50 miles per hour.
During rush hours when the traffic is bumper to bumper, horns blaring, many drivers have taken to the service lane as a way to avoid the backup of traffic. So, now, the service lane becomes the speedway. Many drivers go through the stop sign at First Avenue and 23rd Street, and the one at Asser Levy Place. At the end of the service lane is a sign and signal for a right turn only. Not for many of these drivers who care not what a sign says. There are many, many u-turns made all day, all evening.
If someone stops in the service lane, briefly, to wait for a parking spot, these speeders start honking, and sometimes screaming at the person who has every right to stop for a minute or two.
Another infraction is cars exiting the service lane at what is the entrance, and entering at the exit. It is a collision waiting to happen.
I was at the 13th Police Precinct’s community meeting last summer to discuss these issues. After listing all the above, the only comment was “Oh yes, children go to school over there.”
I think they should have said we really need to keep the residents of the community safe, or people are always crossing to use the gym at Asser Levy Place, or anything in the way of grasping the seriousness of the reckless driving.
I am hoping that action will be taken here, so that we do not have a pedestrian hit by a vehicle, or a very serious accident on 23rd Street.
J. Greene PCV