Brooklyn’s Atlantic Avenue is getting a 25mph speed limit as part of Vision Zero

With more streets planned to follow suit, New Yorkers are going to have to get used to slowing down

Photograph: Ben Rosenzeig

Mayor de Blasio’s Vision Zero campaign is going to be kicking off on Brooklyn’s Atlantic Avenue shortly, by reducing the road’s speed limit from 30mph to 25mph. The campaign aims to drastically reduce the number of traffic fatalities that occur in New York each year (currently an annual average of 4,000 injuries and over 250 deaths), and once the new law has been applied to Atlantic, it will be rolled out to 24 other accident-prone streets around the city.
Motorists might be annoyed by the change at first, but it’s no secret that Atlantic Avenue is not the safest place in town. There were 25 traffic-related deaths just on that one 7.6-mile stretch between 2008 and 2012, so any effort to make people drive more carefully should be appreciated by locals, especially since 13 of those deaths were pedestrians. Obviously, habitual speeders aren’t going to take any more notice of the new speed limit than they did of the old one—just as an example, I once saw two guys on motorbikes popping wheelies at about 70mph down Atlantic in the middle of the afternoon. (I shook my head disapprovingly, along with everyone else at the bus stop, but secretly I was actually quite impressed. I mean, come on—70mph wheelies, that is kind of awesome.) But with any luck, slowing the majority of the traffic down will help make the notoriously dangerous road a little safer.

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Editor: Marley Lynch (@marleyasinbob)

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