“There’s Nothing Legal About the Cars in Prospect Park”

speed_gun_prospect_park.jpgAugust is here, and while New Yorkers are enduring another summer of rush-hour traffic whipping through the city’s flagship parks, some excellent advocacy is bolstering the case for going car-free. Look at the work being done by the Prospect Park Youth Advocates, high school students who are spending their summer vacations gathering data and putting together petitions. Here’s youth advocate Michael Cheng describing a recent foray to the Prospect Park loop drive:

One person used our handy-dandy radar gun
to clock the cars speeds, while a second person recorded the speeds,
and a third person held up a sign a few feet away from the radar that
read "You Are Speeding," while the fourth person stood on cyclist and
pedestrian side of the Loop Drive to attract support from the joggers
and bikers experiencing the wrath of cars invading their road space.

And here’s what they found:

We surveyed over 570 automobiles and found that on the Loop Drive 9 out
of 10 drivers were speeding! 90% of people who drive their cars through
Prospect Park exceed the posted 25mph limit. We even clocked a school
bus driving 42mph and some drivers going as fast as 50mph. How unsafe
is that!

Unsafe, unlawful, and completely unnecessary. After the jump, some more choice observations from Michael.

It was interesting to notice how a majority of the drivers
(including police cars. yes, police cars) failed to follow the 25 mph
speed limit in the park. It is also notable that many cars did not slow
down after reading our sign, but did slow down when cop cars were
nearby.

However, some cars did decelerate when they realized that a speed
gun was pointed at them. So the general driver’s mentality was to obey
the laws only when they might get caught, which is understandable, but
unacceptable. Concerns about safety would vanish once the cars are
gone, and we will try our best to make that happen.

Photo: Prospect Park Youth Advocates

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