ST service roads getting repaved

Sept1 Service road crosswalk edit

The service road along East 14th Street (Photo by Sabina Mollot)

By Sabina Mollot

As Town & Village reported last month, the service roads around Stuyvesant Town/Peter Cooper Village will be getting repaved as will any curb cuts in need of smoothing out.

That project, a result of ongoing complaints from residents to Council Member Dan Garodnick’s office, is set to begin this Friday with milling. The actual paving will be done from September 12-16.

The repaving is being funded by the Department of Transportation separately from related work being done this summer to make the islands around the complex more user-friendly to the disabled by widening the walkways. That project had a price tag of $200 thousand, which was allocated by the City Council.

Both projects have come after years of wear and tear.

“For too long, the city has neglected these crucial arteries serving the residents of ST/PCV,” Garodnick said, “and residents constantly navigate the bumps, pools of still water and general unevenness of these streets.”

He added, “I am very pleased that these upgrades are finally moving forward.”

The work will be done on the Avenue C, First Avenue, 14th Street, 20th Street and 23rd Street service roads.

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Traffic safety improvements underway in Stuyvesant Town

Speed bumps are put into place near the daycare center. (Photo courtesy of Dan Garodnick)

Speed bumps are put into place near the daycare center. (Photo courtesy of Dan Garodnick)

By Sabina Mollot

Stuyvesant Town residents will soon see $100,000 worth of traffic and pedestrian safety improvements made to the neighborhood.

Funds for the project were allocated last week, as part of the city budget, at the request of Council Member Dan Garodnick.

What exact improvements are going to be made has not yet been determined with Garodnick saying he wanted to have the Department of Transportation make its own recommendations. The goal, however is to make the cityscape surrounding the property more child and senior-friendly with smoother curb cuts (the slopes from sidewalks to the street on corners) and other changes aimed at minimizing car and bike accidents.

Increasing crossing times at street lights is a possibility, as are changes to the service roads. Last month, a Town & Village reader asked Garodnick, via a letter to this newspaper, to make the service roads safer. This was after witnessing a pedestrian dart out into one to catch a bus, only to get hit by a car.

“Pedestrians treat the service road as a semi-sidewalk, while drivers drive at full speed,” observed the writer, Joseph Sanderson.

Garodnick said he’s been in touch with Sanderson. “We’re looking at the safety issue on the service road and that could be a part of this potentially,” he said.

He added that he’s also heard from residents that some curb cuts are difficult to manage by people using walkers or pushing strollers.

Meanwhile, other changes aimed at pedestrian safety are already afoot within Stuyvesant Town.

The Council member noted how the recent move of the onsite daycare center from East 14th Street to the old management office building on Avenue C has led to a higher concentration of kids on Avenue C near the southbound entrance to the FDR Drive. Due to concerns over their safety, CompassRock was asked to implement its own safety measures along the Avenue C Loop — and management agreed.

“They responded almost immediately, which we are very grateful for,” said Garodnick.

Improvements include putting two speedbumps along the C Loop, installing “Caution: Children at Play” signage and painting the street outside the center yellow to prevent double parking. The speed bumps were put into place on Tuesday morning, while the painting was already done last Thursday and earlier in the week, Garodnick said he spotted at least one sign.

The improvements inside Stuy Town are being paid for by CompassRock/CWCapital, not the city.

First Ave. parking spots moved for Citibike station

On Monday, drivers were given no clue as to why a “No Standing” sign went up outside of Stuyvesant Town. (Photo taken by a T&V reader)

On Monday, drivers were given no clue as to why a “No Standing” sign went up outside of Stuyvesant Town. (Photo taken by a T&V reader)

By Sabina Mollot

On Monday, the Department of Transportation quietly relocated parking spots that had been on the service road on First Avenue outside Stuyvesant Town to across the street. The reason for the work, apparently, was to accommodate a Citibike station that is also being moved.

Town & Village learned about the project after being contacted by two irate readers, both of whom live in Stuy Town and were annoyed to discover, upon coming home that parking spaces that had always been on the service road on First Avenue near the Gracefully shop were gone. In their place was a new “No Standing” sign.

As one reader, Laurence Watson, observed, “Spots that have been there 25 years are now gone without notice. One guy came home Saturday and had a ticket Sunday morning! It was an available spot on Friday.”

A spokesperson for the Department of Transportation didn’t respond to a request for an explanation by press time, but Council Member Dan Garodnick had better luck in getting answers from the DOT after T&V informed him of the issue.

Garodnick, who was told that the spaces were not removed but relocated to make way for the Citibikes, said that there was a reason for the sudden switch in locations. Apparently, in the bikes’ old spot, a Con Ed steam pipe that was located underneath the ground was sending condensation upwards that was destroying the shared bikes. While the work is underway a “No Standing” sign was installed.

It was on Wednesday afternoon when workers moved the Citibike station.

Garodnick added that there had not been any community notice prior to the project.