atlantic and washington avenue DOT

The Department of Transportation wants to make the three-way intersection of Atlantic, Washington and Underhill Avenues less dangerous for pedestrians with some safety improvements. DNAinfo reported on the agency’s presentation to Community Boards 2 and 8, both of which must approve the proposal for changes to be made.

The intersection is on the border of Clinton Hill and Prospect Heights. The plan calls for:

*Shortening crosswalks by building larger median islands.

*Building a new crosswalk between Lowry Triangle, which sits between Washington and Underhill avenues, and the north side of Atlantic Avenue. There will also be a new crosswalk between the east side of Washington and the small triangle in the middle of the street.

*Increasing the length of crossing signals and delaying traffic lights to give pedestrians more time to cross.

*Restricting left turns from Washington Avenue to Atlantic Avenue and from Atlantic Avenue to Underhill Avenue.

Do you think these ideas will work?

Pedestrian Safety Measures Proposed for Dangerous Atlantic Avenue Crossing [DNA]
Image via DOT

pulaski-bridge-bike-lanes

Construction on the Pulaski Bridge bike lanes has been pushed back once again. Streetsblog reported that the protected bike lanes, originally scheduled to finish this year, likely won’t open until the end of 2015. Last week, we reported construction would wrap in the spring.

Then the DOT gave a presentation [PDF] on the project and said the contractor will start work in April and continue through October or November. Pedestrians and bikers currently share the crowded walking paths, but the DOT plans to convert one lane of Brooklyn-bound traffic to a two-way bike lane.

Officials blamed the delays on the engineering of the 60-year-old drawbridge, which can’t support an additional concrete barrier, and the fact that funding for the bike lanes is tied to work on 10 other bridge projects that needed approval first. The cost of the improvements has also increased from $3,460,000 to $4,200,000.

At least the DOT has finalized a design, which will include textured rumble strips at both entrances to the bridge reminding cyclists to slow down.

Pulaski Bridge Bike Path Now Scheduled to Open by End of 2015 [Streetsblog]
Pulaski Bridge Coverage [Brownstoner]
Rendering via DOT

pulaski-bridge-bike-lanes

The Department of Transportation plans to “launch” the long-awaited Pulaski Bridge bike lane project at a community meeting tomorrow. The DOT will present its plans at 6 pm at MoMA P.S. 1 at 22-25 Jackson Avenue in Long Island City.

Last we heard about the Pulaski bike lanes, construction was delayed until sometime next year. But last month, the DOT announced that it had found a contractor and work would wrap by spring 2015. When it’s finished, there will be a two-way bike lane and a dedicated pedestrian lane. To create the bike lane, the agency will cut three lanes of Brooklyn-bound traffic to two lanes.

Rendering via DOT

barclays-120914

Hundreds staged die-ins in front of Barclays and Target last night as Prince William and Kate took in a Nets game to protest the grand jury decision in the Eric Garner case. Target closed early, cops blocked the Atlantic Center Mall, and the subway stop there was shut down just as the game let out, according to Tweets and news reports.

Nets and Cleveland Cavelier players wore “I Can’t Breathe” tshirts. Russell Simmons chatted with protesters outside Barclays during the game, then tweeted “I am deeply inspired by all of the young people who are marching for justice. You are leading this country to a much better place.”

Was anyone there?

LeBron Wears an “I Can’t Breathe” Shirt at Barclays Center [NY Post]
Protesters Converge on Barclays Center [WSJ]
Eric Garner Protesters Set for Barclays Brouhaha [Eagle]
Eric Garner Protests Held Outside Barclays Center [7 Online]
Demonstrators Protest Eric Garner Decision Outside Barclays Center [DNA]
Photo via Ustream

putnam plaza proposal 1

The Department of Transportation has released three proposals for the design of Clinton Hill’s Putnam Triangle Plaza. The designs came out of public workshops convened by the Fulton Area Business Alliance.

The green space opened three years ago and is bordered by Fulton Street, Grand Avenue and Putnam Avenue. Neighbors said they wanted space for a green market, a drinking fountain, a concession kiosk, bike racks and plantings that buffered noise from traffic.

Architects Thomas Balsey Associates, the Fulton Area Business Alliance and the DOT presented the first round of designs at a meeting Wednesday.

Fixing up the 15,000-square-foot space will cost roughly $3,750,000, according to the DOT. Take a look at the presentation to learn more about each proposal as well as a FAQ sheet on the project. The rendering above shows the first design option, and you can click through to see layouts and renderings for the other two.

What do you think of the proposals?

Putnam Triangle Plaza Coverage [Brownstoner] 
Renderings via DOT

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putnam triangle plaza

The Fulton Area Business Alliance is hosting its second meeting tonight about redesigning the Putnam Triangle Plaza, currently a makeshift public space surrounded by Putnam Avenue, Fulton Street and Grand Avenue in Clinton Hill. Residents can stop by anytime between 6 and 8 pm to discuss how they want to improve the plaza and to review design concepts created at the last meeting in September. It’ll happen at the Grace Agard Harewood Neighborhood Senior Center, located at 966 Fulton Street between Grand Avenue and Cambridge Place.

Putnam Triangle Plaza Coverage [Brownstoner]

Image via FAB

Prospect Heights

NYC Service and the Citizen’s Committee for New York City are giving out grants to help neighborhood groups spruce up their communities. The Love Your Block program awards $1,000 grants and allows groups to partner with the departments of transportation, sanitation and parks to beautify streets. The city will help with things like graffiti removal, repairing signs and streetlights and free mulch for tree pits.

Applications are due by November 7 and projects need to be started between April and June. Since the program began in 2009, 225 grants have been given out. Find out more about the program here.

Myrtle Plaza1

Officials will break ground on the long-delayed Myrtle Avenue Pedestrian Plaza on Thursday. The project will create a 25,000 square foot plaza on Myrtle Avenue between Hall Street and Emerson Place.

The plan has been in the works for many years; community meetings to develop the design began in 2010. This stretch of Myrtle has two lanes, one for regular traffic and a service road on the east-bound side. The revamp will shorten the service road from four blocks to two (a narrower road will remain between Hall Street and Grand Street Avenue) and will create a plaza with trees, plantings, public art, a water fountain and programming space.

Once completed, the space will be maintained by the Myrtle Avenue Brooklyn Partnership, which will coordinate with local groups to organize events there. Construction should last between 12 and 18 months. More renderings after the jump.

Myrtle Plaza Design Is Finally a Go [Brownstoner]
Delays for the Myrtle Avenue Pedestrian Plaza [Brownstoner]
Inventing the Myrtle Avenue Pedestrian Plaza [Brownstoner]
Renderings via Myrtle Avenue Brooklyn Partnership

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pulaski-bridge

After two years of planning, it looks like the Pulaski Bridge bike lane promised for this year will be delayed until sometime next year at least, Streetsblog reported.

A year ago, the city approved DOT’s plan to convert one lane of Brooklyn-bound car traffic on the Pulaski Bridge into a bikes-only path with separate lanes for Queens- and Brooklyn-bound bikes. Construction was supposed to start in the spring and wrap late this year (at the latest). But construction has not yet begun, and the city is still reviewing the final bid from the contractor. A spokesman for Assembly member Joe Lentol, who has been lobbying for the bike path since 2012, told Streetsblog that it’s “unlikely” work will start by the end of December.

Pedestrians and cyclists currently share the narrow path, with traffic going both ways in the same lane, creating hazardous conditions for everyone. Reconfiguring the traffic lanes is also expected to calm car traffic on McGuiness Boulevard by slowing down drivers as they come off the bridge.

As soon as the contractor gets the green light from the city, the DOT will announce a new construction timetable. Incidentally, the state is contributing $2,500,000 to the project with federal funds, and the city is contributing $625,000.

Pulaski Bridge Bikeway Likely Delayed Until Next Year [Streetsblog]
City Says Yes to Pulaski Bike Lane [Brownstoner]

Photo by NYC Tom

cadman plaza east brooklyn heights 82014

When we biked down Cadman Plaza East in Brooklyn Heights today, Department of Environmental Protection workers were tearing up the road to repair the sewers. Workers onsite told us that they expect the project to take anywhere from three to six months. They also said they’re going to repaint the bike lane that runs next to the courthouse.

Later in the year, they plan on doing work on Red Cross Place and the southbound section of Adams Street, next to the Brooklyn Bridge approach. This section of Cadman Plaza East is closed to traffic. Cyclists who take it to get out of Dumbo will have to find an alternate route for the next few months.

macon-street-greenest-1-080614

The block of Macon Street between Ralph and Howard avenues has won the Greenest Block in Brooklyn award. Competition for this honor is fierce every year, with hundreds of block associations all over Brooklyn participating.

The block of Bainbridge Street between Malcolm X Boulevard and Stuyvesant Avenue in Bed Stuy and the block of East 25th Street between Clarendon Road and Avenue D in Flatbush tied for second place.

Lincoln Road between Bedford and Rogers Avenues in Prospect Lefferts Gardens and Sterling Place between Flatbush and 7th Avenues in Park Slope tied for third place. For more information on the contest, check out the website of the Brooklyn Botanic Garden.

On Macon Street, we noticed a huge variety of plants and unusual plant combinations. Click through to the jump to see a few more snaps of Macon Street. (more…)

tree care

If you want to help make Greenpoint and Williamsburg a little greener, you can plant and take care of trees with the Human Impacts Institute every Tuesday through the beginning of September. Volunteers clean up, aerate and mulch tree beds, as well as plant bulbs in tree bed soil. For the month of August, green thumbs can meet up at P.S. 31, located at 75 Meserole Avenue (at the corner of Lorimer Street) every Tuesday morning from 10 am to noon. The one exception will be next Tuesday, when “Tree Care Tuesday” will take place in the evening from 5 pm to 7 pm. Check out the institute’s calendar for more details. Participants should RSVP by emailing info@humanimpactsinstitute.org or calling (917) 727 9761.

Photo via Human Impacts Institute