Bill de Blasio Outlines His “Vision Zero” Plan

As if on cue, Bill de Blasio today released a plan to reduce city traffic fatalities to zero within 10 years.

Bill de Blasio. Photo: ##http://www.crainsnewyork.com/article/20111211/POLITICS/312119988##Crain’s##

The paper draws heavily on data and, while some facets would require concessions from Albany and cooperation from NYPD, it’s the most comprehensive and detailed street safety policy released by a mayoral candidate to date.

“The City must take decisive and sustained action to reduce street fatalities each year until we have achieved ‘Vision Zero’ — a city with zero fatalities or serious injuries caused by car crashes on the streets of New York,” the paper reads.

Here are the main points:

  • De Blasio says DOT should revamp at least 50 dangerous corridors and intersections a year, with a focus on poorer neighborhoods, areas near schools, and neighborhoods with higher senior populations. “This means narrowing excessively wide streets that encourage reckless passing and speeding, widening sidewalks and medians to make streets easier and safer to cross, and adding dedicated bicycle infrastructure to create a safe space for New Yorkers on bikes.”
  • De Blasio would quadruple the number of DOT Slow Zones, to 52, in four years.
  • Citing enforcement and fatality data related to speeding and failure to yield, de Blasio says, “NYPD should track and prioritize the enforcement of speeding, failures to yield to pedestrians, and reckless driving on particularly deadly roads and streets.” He also calls for more traffic cameras and an end to Albany control over their use in NYC.

It seems the engineering components outlined by de Blasio would, at least, continue the work of DOT under Bloomberg. This is an area that is completely within the mayor’s control. And though de Blasio doesn’t exactly call NYPD out — there is no mention, for example, of the department’s failure to investigate serious traffic crashes — it’s good to see a candidate talk about the need for better traffic enforcement.

All in all, for mayoral aspirants seeking the street safety vote, Bill de Blasio has raised the bar.

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