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DOT does about face on Joralemon and Hicks streets

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Following a hue and cry from several local residents, the city’s Department of Transportation (DOT) decided to scale down traffic calming measures they began instituting at the intersection of Joralemon and Hicks streets.

The change of heart came after workers started installing traffic-calming curb expansions, called “neckdowns,” at three of the four corners last week.

This led to complaints from some local residents that stretching the sidewalks would pose problems for turning fire trucks.

“The Department of Transportation has informed me it took another look at the intersection after hearing comments from some local residents. The neckdown on the southwest corner of Joralemon and Hicks streets will not be constructed,” said Community Board 2 District Manager Robert Perris.

“It was determined that the recently constructed neckdown on the southeast corner is sufficient to shorten pedestrian crossing distances and having neckdowns on both sides may in fact present issues for some Fire Department vehicles,” he added.

DOT spokesperson Montgomery Dean said the agency reviewed the project at Joralemon and Hicks streets, and determined that the neckdowns already installed at the southeast and northwest corners achieve the goals of traffic calming and pedestrian safety at the intersection.

“When implementing traffic-calming measures to improve safety, DOT consults with other agencies to address potential impacts on operations and works with them to make necessary changes,” Dean said.

The traffic calming in Downtown Brooklyn comes after a 2004 study of the entire area to reduce traffic impacts.

The study and recommendation goals were to not increase total traffic capacity through the area, and improve efficiency on primary streets while discouraging motorists from using side streets.

The study stated the traffic calming is intended to reinforce appropriate travel patterns and street usage consistent with street management frameworks, and improve high pedestrian accident locations.

Additionally, the traffic calming measures are incorporated to reinforce the truck and bicycle networks, and integrate specific treatments with area-wide strategies.

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