After the death of nine-year-old Giovanni Ampuero in late April, advocates, lawmakers and families all called on DOT to act.
Anything short of a complete overhaul would be insufficient, given that ten people, including several children, have died from traffic fatalities on Northern in the last two years.
DOT listened. Last week, in addition to announcing a redesign, they joined NYPD officials to announce additional enforcement on the thoroughfare.
To get community input, the agency hosted a workshop at the Louis Armstrong Middle School in Jackson Heights on Monday.
Two more are planned: one on Monday, October 22, at PS 151 in Woodside, and another on Monday, October 29, at PS 166. Both will run from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.
We urge all residents who live near or use Northern Boulevard to participate in these workshops. It’s crucial that the city hears your thoughts and concerns, no matter how big or small.
Like they did on Queens Boulevard, DOT will use your input to create a redesign through a community process. Though the Queens Boulevard overhaul has led to many tough and controversial discussions, some ongoing, but there’s no debate that it has saved lives.
There will be hard questions ahead. How do residents feel about potentially adding bike lanes? How will truck traffic be impacted, which will affect local businesses? Will it be enough to curb the accidents and crashes?
Regardless of how you feel, residents must speak up. DOT is offering a platform, so the public must take advantage of it.
It’s the best way to make sure no other kid or adult ends up getting killed for simply walking across Northern Boulevard, and that the redesign in one that has the full support of the community.