There are so many dangerous streets in my neighborhood that I tend to forget about completely insane streets like this one. The official name is Queens Boulevard but it’s been known locally as the “Boulevard of Death” for many decades. Just how are you supposed to cross this 12 lane highway?
Pedestrians are killed along Queens Boulevard on a fairly regular basis, mainly because they attempt to cross against the signal. Since traffic flow is so heavily prioritized, the signals do not provide enough crossing time. How are you supposed to obey the signals when you have to run halfway across, then wait in the middle for at least two minutes, then run across the rest? Standing on a tiny piece of concrete in the middle of a highway is quite a terrifying experience. And with traffic speeds often reaching twice the speed limit of 30 miles per hour -- and the signals timed to encourage such dangerous behavior -- it is easy to underestimate the amount of time you have to run across.
Unfortunately, rather than seeking a solution, the Department of Transportation decided to blame the victim and install these signs:
The real problem is the design of the roadway. The highway-like corridor encourages driving at far higher speeds than are safe in any urban area. Let’s repurpose half of the street for things like bus lanes, bike lanes, park space, and perhaps even selling some of the land to developers in order to finance such changes.