Skip to Content
Streetsblog New York City home
Streetsblog New York City home
Log In

Eyes on the Street: New Pedestrian Islands on Northern Boulevard

Photo: DOT

The dangerous five-legged intersection of Northern Boulevard, 34th Avenue, and 48th Street has a new pedestrian island, sidewalk extension, and crosswalks. Transportation Commissioner Polly Trottenberg joined Council Member Jimmy Van Bramer on Friday to unveil the improvements.

Council Member Jimmy Van Bramer and DOT Commissioner Polly Trottenberg. Photo: David Meyer
Council Member Jimmy Van Bramer and DOT Commissioner Polly Trottenberg. Photo: David Meyer
Council Member Jimmy Van Bramer and DOT Commissioner Polly Trottenberg. Photo: David Meyer

Northern Boulevard is one of the most dangerous roads in Queens, according to city data, with an average of more than two people killed while walking or biking each year. The intersection with 48th Street is one of 14 where DOT is installing pedestrian islands and other safety improvements on a 1.3-mile stretch from Honeywell Avenue to Broadway [PDF].

"Northern Boulevard is critical to Queens and the safety of the tens of thousands of people who live near it and travel on it every day, and it's part of what is really at the heart of Vision Zero," Trottenberg said.

Three years ago, Van Bramer held a press event at the same intersection to call on Mayor de Blasio to make safety on Northern Boulevard a "Vision Zero" priority.

"It's an important corridor, and in the past it has been a dangerous corridor," Van Bramer said.

Since 2014, DOT has installed pedestrian islands at the intersection with 61st Street where an unlicensed truck driver killed 8-year-old Noshat Nahian, and at nine locations between 62nd Street and 102nd Street [PDF]. The agency plans to implement five more between 105th Street and 114th Street [PDF].

Other segments of North Boulevard have yet to receive attention, including the intersection with Junction Boulevard where 17-year-old Ovidio Jaramillo was struck and killed in 2015. Agency reps have said left turn bans, which where implemented at nearby intersections, would be problematic at that location because both streets are designated truck routes.

In 2016, all three fatalities on Northern Boulevard occurred in Eastern Queens, where DOT has been absent.

"Our intention is to continue over the years to move throughout the whole boulevard," Trottenberg said about safety improvements further east.

Stay in touch

Sign up for our free newsletter

More from Streetsblog New York City

Tuesday’s Headlines: Valley of Political Death Edition

Did you see the new poll showing congestion pricing is really unpopular? Ignore it! Good times are coming. Plus other news in today's headlines.

April 23, 2024

Open Streets Groups Warn of Extra Red Tape to Run Events

Two weeks notice for hopscotch or a yoga class?

April 23, 2024

Monday’s Headlines: A Federal Case over Parking Edition

We're flicking our bicycle bell over a big scoop last week that no one picked up on...yet. Plus other news.

April 22, 2024

Hochul, Legislators Reach Toll Evasion Crackdown Deal

Higher fines for covering a plate and for not paying tolls are part of the budget deal inked on Saturday.

April 22, 2024

Behind the Scenes: How Gov. Hochul Got ‘Sammy’s Law’ Over the Finish Line

Opponents didn't want to put their name on a no vote for the life-saving measure.

April 22, 2024
See all posts