Safety doesn’t happen by accident. It’s no wonder, then, that at a recent Garden City Board of Trustees meeting, village brass stressed that nothing be left to chance.
Trustee Robert Bolebruch brought up Seventh Street, saying that ensuring people’s safety has become more difficult as more restaurants have cropped up—The Guac Shop, Go Greek and B. Good, to name a few—and a greater number of patrons have frequented them. This, Bolebruch noted, is exacerbated by drivers making illegal U-turns on the street.
“Online and on Facebook, some comments from people ticketed for making illegal U-turns on Seventh Street indicated that they did not even see posted signage about that while driving,” he said. “There are only a couple, maybe four signs there, and I was thinking about increasing signage about U-turns further down on stretches of Seventh so people would see them.”
Bolebruch reiterated his main concern: drivers’ “total disregard” for pedestrians crossing the block’s walkways, whose small plastic signage, which give pedestrians a false sense of security, is the only way drivers recognize them.
“I know some people mentioned the idea of speed bumps along Seventh, but I am just not in favor of that because if someone driving hits a speed bump and they were going too fast, they could lose control over the car,” he said.
To this, trustee John Delany proposed placing a flashing stop sign at the Dunkin’ Donuts crosswalk, citing its effectiveness at the village’s senior center on Golf Club Lane.
Ushering in the last point of concern, Bolebruch asked Superintendent of Public Works Joseph DiFrancisco to provide recommendations on safety measures that could be implemented at the Seventh Street/Franklin Avenue corners, both of which have popular eateries—Leo’s and The French Workshop.
Bolebruch suggested that worries about a devastating accident could be assuaged by adding large, decorative planters or sturdy vertical posts at each corner, the latter idea being more palatable to trustee Mark Hyer, who insisted that a large planter would restrict drivers’ visibility.
“If anybody’s out there in the spring and the summer, those places are packed and they can’t be more than about six feet from Franklin Avenue,” Bolebruch said. “If a car lost control on that corner, it would take [out] 15 to 20 people on either side of Seventh Street…we have to do something as a village to make it a safer environment.”