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October 6, 2011

At DOT hearing on bollard plan, a challenge to claim that an effective width of 5'2" would not create sidewalk bottleneck outside arena

Atlantic Yards Report

Clearly New York City Department of Transportation (DOT) hearings on "revocable consents"--permission to install structures on city property--are typically pro forma affairs, held in a small conference room in a Lower Manhattan building.

Well, yesterday's hearing, which included consideration of the bollard and street furniture plan for the Atlantic Yards arena block, was a little different. DOT staffers were faced with detailed testimony that took issue with a just-produced claim that a smaller sidewalk, with an effective width of 5'2", would make no difference to pedestrians.

After all, as testimony from the Prospect Heights Neighborhood Development Council (PHNDC) indicated, the official analysis was based on 2006 pedestrian counts, not those generated by 2009 changes in the project plan which could deliver more people to the south side of Atlantic Avenue west of Pacific Street.

Will those comments make a difference? Unclear, but DOT will accept further comments through October 15 (via Emma Berenblit at eberenblit@dot.nyc.gov) and will review these in consultation with other DOT divisions or other agencies.

No deadline has been set for the agency's decision, though the latest Atlantic Yards Construction Alert indicated that a reconfiguration of Flatbush Avenue MPT (Maintenance and Protection of Traffic)--which recently began--would set the stage for bollard installation and facade work.

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Posted by eric at October 6, 2011 10:34 AM