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Jim Brennan Poll Finds 3-2 Margin of Support for PPW Redesign

Assembly Member Jim Brennan's office released the results of a telephone survey on the Prospect Park West redesign this afternoon [PDF], and the topline numbers echo the results of the web survey conducted last year by Council Members Brad Lander and Steve Levin and Community Board 6.

By an overall margin of 48 percent to 32 percent, more people feel the redesign has improved the street than made it worse. A similar margin prefer to keep the redesign than to get rid of it -- 44 percent to 28 percent, with 25 percent choosing the option of "altering it to respond to pedestrian and driver concerns." (In response to concerns, DOT has proposed narrowing the bike buffer near Grand Army Plaza and installing raised pedestrian refuges and bike "rumble strips" at intersections, a plan that cleared two CB 6 committees unanimously last month.)

Last fall's Lander/Levin/CB 6 survey found very similar results among a non-random sample of 1,800 Park Slope residents, with 49 percent saying the redesign should be kept as is, 29 percent preferring to revert to the old design, and 22 percent saying the new configuration should be kept with changes.

Brennan's poll, conducted by the firm Kiley & Company, surveyed 500 voters in Park Slope, Windsor Terrace, and Kensington. The sample was collected by randomly calling from a list of 25,000 voters. Compared to the overall population of Brennan's district, however, the sample seems to favor car owners -- 66 percent of the respondents said they own or have use of a car that they drive regularly in Brooklyn, but only 49 percent of households in Brennan's district own cars, according to Census data gathered from 2005 to 2009.

The difference is significant, because among regular car users in Brennan's poll, 40 percent said the redesign has made the street worse, compared to 32 percent of the overall sample. The overall support for the redesign would probably have been higher than 48 percent if the sample had accurately reflected the area's car ownership rates.

Despite the positive topline numbers, Brennan is still not taking a position on the redesign. Citing a few specific survey results, like the 42 percent of older respondents who reported feeling less safe crossing the bike lane, the Assembly member said in a statement that he is "reluctant to endorse the bike lane as is."

The poll appears to be the same survey that Streetsblog readers reported receiving earlier this week. Kiley & Company may have used Quantel Research, the firm surveyors identified themselves as working for, as a sub-vendor.

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