De Blasio’s Proposed Budget Increases Funding for Street Redesigns
Mayor de Blasio’s proposed budget includes an additional $400 million for street projects to be spread over six years, WNYC reports.
We’re still sorting through how this compares to current spending and we’ll update the story as more information becomes available, but the changes appear to be substantial.
Advocates have called on City Hall to devote more resources to street redesigns, pointing out that the de Blasio administration wasn’t getting projects done fast enough to meet its target of improving the most dangerous streets in the city in 10 years. And for two years, the City Council has asked de Blasio to increase the Vision Zero budget, proposing an additional $52 million annually for street safety projects built with paint, planters, and other low-cost materials.
The $400 million in new Vision Zero funding comes out to about $66 million per year. It’s not clear exactly how the money will be spent, but WNYC reports that it will quadruple the number of intersections that receive “high-visibility markings, pedestrian ramps and crossing signs,” and that crosswalk markings will be replaced on a faster timetable.
“Right now it looks very good for Vision Zero,” TA Executive Director Paul White told Streetsblog. “We want to thank the mayor for increasing his financial commitment.”
White said it’s vital that the additional funds go directly to street improvements.
“In 2017, we shouldn’t be debating the merits of protected crosswalks and protected bike lanes,” said White. “They should be implemented as a matter of course. We want to make sure 100 percent of this new funding is devoted to actual fixes, and not years and years of unnecessary process.”