A Park Circle Where Walkers Feel Welcome

park_circle.jpg

This proposal for Brooklyn’s Park Circle — Grand Army Plaza’s twin traffic disaster at the opposite end of Prospect Park — comes from Streetsblog Flickr pool contributor Sean Kenney. Currently, extraneous asphalt and accelerating vehicles abound here (check after the jump for a shot of existing conditions). Says Sean about his re-design:

With this concept, the intersections (and
traffic lights) force motorists to negotiate
standard, slow, 90-degree turns. The
reclaimed street space for plazas or park
space (the tan areas) can also host a
separated bike lane for access to the park
and greenways.

Like GAPCo’s proposal for Grand Army Plaza, this design could revive a rarely used public space by connecting it to the park and making it more accessible to pedestrians. The Department of City Planning showed a similar concept for Park Circle at a meeting sponsored by Community Board 7 last month, presenting it as more of a far-off vision than a near-term possibility. (Read Sholom Brody’s write-up on the Livable Streets Community site for a full recap.)

Based on the results of a DOT public workshop at that same meeting, safer pedestrian crossings around the perimeter of the circle could be in the offing later this year. While we’re re-envisioning this space, I’d also like to see some enterprising developer raze that curb-cutting Commerce Bank at the corner of Prospect Park Southwest and replace it with a building that actually engages the sidewalk. Other suggestions?

park_circle_before.jpgWhat Park Circle looks like now.

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