Yesterday while driving to work, like many of you, I observed a considerable back up of traffic on South 12th Street south of the tracks. Denton Avenue / Tanners Pond Road was also worse than I’ve seen it. So too was Herricks Road as northbound traffic was backed up to Garden City High School with so many cars being diverted to the underpass. Apparently, the confluence of conditions: Covert Avenue closed, Nassau Boulevard restricted, and school reopening makes the whole area very vulnerable to even the slightest delays on the LIRR that causes trains to move slower and gates to stay down longer.
Superintendent, Tom Gannon and Trustee Burger and I discussed the issue at length with 3TC during our weekly conference call this afternoon. We asked 3TC to put in place some of the mitigation measures to help deter an extraordinary and unacceptable volume of traffic through neighborhood streets. There doesn’t seem to be a single panacea, but the combination of some efforts we’ve identified should help, they include:
- Putting signage up at Stewart Avenue and South 12th Street showing South 12th Street closed except for local traffic.
- This may deter some, but others are likely to ignore the signs
- Installing speed bumps on South 12th Street to make this route uncomfortable to use.
- 3TC is laying out a plan for the speed bumps.
- The unintended consequence may be that traffic may divert to South 11th Street or South 13th Street
- Eliminating left hand turns from South 12th Street to 2nd and 3rd Avenues
- Requesting a temporary traffic signal at the South 12th Street grade crossing
- Requesting help from NC Third Precinct when conditions described above conspire to create heavy traffic
- We’ve secured greatly increased traffic enforcement from the Third Precinct in the area. We are requesting traffic management services and a visible police presence to discourage unsafe vehicular movement by frustrated drivers.
- No left turn from NHP Road to Clinch
We will continue to work with the MTA/LIRR, 3TC, NCPD, MTA PD and all other agencies that can provide us with some measure of relief and keep us safe as we endure the adversity this project has brought on our neighborhood. I look forward to the project’s completion when the ultimate traffic conditions are returned to level more conducive to its setting.
Lawrence J. Montreuil