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Re: 800+ pedestrians hurt, 19 killed, on JFK Blvd. in past 10 years
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maybe... lightrail/shared street with cars (like paulus hook area) from jsq up the middle of jfk to congress then turn down congress to the elevator. Call it the JC Loop, part of the hudson bergen lightrail circling back to the liberty light rail station and new streetcar back to jsq?? stop every six streets on jfk? 24/7? Sign me up.
Usta be lightrail down central back in days wonder how it did.
Maybe make summit one way street going south from secaucus/5th street Union city border while you're at it?

Posted on: 2015/4/11 3:10
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Re: 800+ pedestrians hurt, 19 killed, on JFK Blvd. in past 10 years
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I've been hit by a car. It sucks. Drivers suck. Pedestrians suck. Everyone sucks. Period. Have a nice safe weekend folks!

Posted on: 2015/4/10 22:27
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Re: 800+ pedestrians hurt, 19 killed, on JFK Blvd. in past 10 years
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This conversation strikes me as a bit circular. I don't think ANYONE is arguing AGAINST making the roads safer. What some of us are saying is that concentrating on just one thing is sheer folly. Roads in a dense urban environment such as ours are a complex ecosystem of multiple users, with different needs and wants. Just like there should be an effort to implement traffic calming measures, there has to be an effort to educate pedestrians and cyclists. Simply put [cliche alert!] the approach should be holistic.

And, as someone else stated earlier, I say this as multi-mode user of our roads: pedestrian, runner, cyclist, motorcyclist and car driver. To the extent possible, we should accommodate all users of roads, without undue restrictions that favor one over the other. Doing so will only lead to more antagonistic and aggressive behavior by the aggrieved party(ies).

Posted on: 2015/4/10 13:46
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Re: 800+ pedestrians hurt, 19 killed, on JFK Blvd. in past 10 years
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I walk a mile down JFK to the PATH every day and agree there are plenty of pedestrians engaging in risky behavior by crossing against the light, but I think there is WAY more that could be done to improve safety for all users of this road. Just over the past couple months, I've seen the following:

1) I was crossing with the pedestrian signal and a driver who was completely stopped and clearly only looking the other way at traffic decided to move forward to make a turn on red while I was in front of his car! I had to literally put my hand on the hood of his car.

2) I was watching someone try to cross JFK with the ped signal near JSQ and car after car was making a left turn (at rather quick speed) to the point where he couldn't get across the road and turned around to wait for the next signal cycle! No car would slow down even though this guy was in the right and halfway across the road.

3) A little further down an older woman who was walking slowly was trying to cross JFK with the ped signal and again, cars turning left kept turning in front of her, slowing her down even more. She couldn't get across before the light changed and of course then cars who got the green start honking.

4) My bf was biking down JFK in the correct direction with traffic. A car on the other side u-turned and nearly hit him so he swerved into the curb and fell -- pretty badly injuring his ribs. Pretty sure the car driver didn't even realize.

5) When crossing 139 where it hits JFK, cars making a right onto 139 always try to make their turn even as you're approaching the lane they're turning into. Often they block the cars behind them from seeing that there's a pedestrian, and cars behind often just follow without slowing down to look for themselves.

I wish JFK had a bike lane and think it's wide enough to accommodate one. I don't feel safe enough riding my bike on JFK regularly and would really like to. I think some of the crossings could incorporate pedestrian islands and/or bulb-outs at the corners to reduce crossing distance.

Posted on: 2015/4/10 13:17
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Re: 800+ pedestrians hurt, 19 killed, on JFK Blvd. in past 10 years
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I agree. Hopefully, simple changes can be done soon. Just adding a bunch of speed bumps all over town should be enough. More cops visibly ticketing offenders would be great too.
While coming back from work today, I was almost clipped by a car turning too fast onto Columbus Dr. I had the walk sign to cross.

Posted on: 2015/4/9 23:18
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Re: 800+ pedestrians hurt, 19 killed, on JFK Blvd. in past 10 years
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>> ... too many people are invested in "what is" and lack either the imagination or incentive to look at the problem and see what could be. <<

True. And much of the resistance has been very deliberately cultivated and baked into our brains by the monied players in this game. They invented the idea of jaywalking to convince us to stop sharing the streets, and they love to promote "be seen" and "bike safe" campaigns for bikes and peds because, while they may genuinely help safety in the short term, they also keep us peons scared and in our place at the curb line, while safewashing their ghastly record of carnage.

In a sense, though, the good news is exactly that: We're causing so much harm to ourselves by worshiping the car, that as soon as people get a taste of more urban walkability/bikeability/transit, most of them love it and ask for more, despite their early kicking and screaming against it. When they get clean, the urban car addiction is quickly seen for what it was.

Remember when Citi Bike was about to start up in NYC? Pundits, comedians, cranks of all nations confidently predicted that dead tourists would be stacked in the streets like cordwood and the gutters would run red with biker blood. Either that, or noooobody would be crazy enough to ride the stupid things in NYC traffic. Remember that?

Over 20 million miles and nearly two years later, exactly zero people have been killed on a Citi Bike, or by a Citi Bike. None. None people. The system's biggest problems were that it had some balky software (since updated), and that it was too popular: too many residents and commuters bought memberships at too low a price. And now that system is about to double in size, with essentially a branch office here in Jersey City. The biggest pre-emptive complaint we hear is that everybody wants a dock on their block!

Eventually, people here will realize that the real aberration, the really bizarre, dangerous, tragic Frankenstein experiment, was the one we tried over the last 50 years, when we turned our great cities from places to go TO into places to go THROUGH.

It's all reversible.

Posted on: 2015/4/9 21:47
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Re: 800+ pedestrians hurt, 19 killed, on JFK Blvd. in past 10 years
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JC can have whatever they want to tax and provide for. Expecting others to pay for it is another kettle of fish. Frankly, cities like Camden are much more needy than JC for the limited resources we have.

Posted on: 2015/4/9 21:20
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Re: 800+ pedestrians hurt, 19 killed, on JFK Blvd. in past 10 years
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Quote:

elsquid wrote:
This is our insanity:

nj.com article

And this is our solution??

>>During a press conference about the March 30 incident, Hudson County Sheriff Frank X. Schillari advised pedestrians to be more careful on the road.

"[Many pedestrians] underestimate the traffic coming," Schillari said. "A lot of people take a chance, because they're all in a hurry."

To pedestrians, he said, "Cross at the crosswalk. Wait for the traffic light to change."<<

Well, yes. But no. I understand the sheriff's desire to protect people, and his advice is good in a vacuum. But traffic is not weather; it is us, and we can change it.

The way to stop the carnage on our Boulevard of Death isn't to keep urging pedestrians to be more careful, or more visible, or to wave fluorescent orange flags to "alert drivers to their presence." (Yes, that's a real thing. Google it.)

The solution isn't mysterious or gradual or experimental or untested; it's being done on similarly inappropriate suburban speedways all over this metropolitan area, including Queens and Woodhaven Boulevards in NYC, and on dozens of other arterial deathtraps across the country.

It's called Complete Streets, and generally it 1. reduces the number of car lanes and narrows them ("road diet"), 2. adds protected bike lanes, 3. adds pedestrian protection like middle islands, corner curb bump-outs, and raised crosswalks, 4. calms and slows traffic with these and other features, and 5. improves and expands mass transit options, e.g., bus-only lanes and better bus shelters.

This set of concepts has been the basis for urban street design in much of Western Europe for decades now, saving tens of thousands of lives. To do anything less here, or to delay doing so for another day, would be immoral and disgraceful.


Like. Mega like. Unfortunately, as you've already seen in many of the posted responses, too many people are invested in "what is" and lack either the imagination or incentive to look at the problem and see what could be. Complete streets has been an overwhelming success not only in Western Europe but in many truly progressive cities in North America (many of which are bigger and just as congested in the areas in which complete streets have been implemented as Jersey City.) The retrograde, knee-jerk aversion to change that so often bubbles up is so depressing. But it answers the question I always ask myself when I travel somewhere that I enjoy: "Why can't WE (JC) have nice things?"

Posted on: 2015/4/9 21:05
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Re: 800+ pedestrians hurt, 19 killed, on JFK Blvd. in past 10 years
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elsquid, imagine how much infrastructure improvements we could have if we got rid of prevailing wage rules? Could you live better on a 35% raise? Imagine having 35% more money to spend on projects? That would be a huge way to fund projects without raising the gas tax one red cent. Too bad the special interest groups and their party in Trenton oppose it.

Posted on: 2015/4/9 19:53
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Re: 800+ pedestrians hurt, 19 killed, on JFK Blvd. in past 10 years
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I walk along JFK mornings and evenings during my commute, and yes, I see some pedestrians making dumb moves--but honestly, not that many. It's too dangerous. What I do see is plenty of bad driving: 1) drivers routinely exceeding the 25 mph speed limit; 2) drivers making turns without slowing down while pedestrians (who have the light) are in the crosswalk; and 3) drivers running red lights. I see this EVERY SINGLE DAY. I worry more about getting hit by a car while I'm crossing Montgomery with the light than I ever worry about getting mugged.

I tend to think that traffic calming measures such as bike lanes and stricter speed limit enforcement would be a great solution. But I'd be interested in hearing how the commentators who criticize pedestrian behavior would address the prevalance of risky driving on JFK.

Posted on: 2015/4/9 19:27
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Re: 800+ pedestrians hurt, 19 killed, on JFK Blvd. in past 10 years
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Don't know if I've ever said this before, but I agree with Monroe on all of this.

I drive JC every day, and my most frustrating time is passing down, thru, or across Central Avenue, at any time. It's as if the walk/don't walk signs simply don't exist. No one uses crosswalks, no one uses the walk/don't walk, people dart out from between cars and play "human Frogger". It is beyond frustrating.

And as much as some people here want to also complain about "idiot drivers", this has nothing to do with them. You could be the most perfect driver on earth, and still run the risk of plowing thru people on a daily basis…

When I do make the effort to "yell" at someone and point out the signs and right of ways, I am always, not often, but ALWAYS met with cursing, yelling, obscene gestures, or looks of complete disregard.

And this is written as someone who walks, drives, bikes, and motorcycles Jersey City.


Posted on: 2015/4/9 19:24
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Re: 800+ pedestrians hurt, 19 killed, on JFK Blvd. in past 10 years
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Quote:

Monroe wrote:
Quote:

elsquid wrote:
The improvements planned are fine, but very limited. MUCH more needs to be done.


How much more in taxes are you willing to pay to support these needs?


How many people are you willing to see torn to pieces for lack of it?

And how much in extra public health care costs are you willing to fund to treat those grievous injuries, not to mention the increased deaths from lung cancer and diseases of stress and sedentary living that car monoculture causes? How much in public assistance for the families shattered by road violence? How much for the time and productivity lost to employers when employees are damaged by all the above? How much for the exponentially more frequent road repairs and maintenance necessitated by cars vs. bikes and public transit? Etc. ...

Constantly catering to the almighty privately owned passenger car has HUGE costs, financial and otherwise, to our whole society. We're still spending billions on shiny new road projects, justified by bogus traffic projections by the same consultants who stand to make money off the new construction, while our existing roads and bridges crumble. It's a dirty racket.

Meanwhile, Complete Streets generally help the microeconomies along them. Merchants on 9th Ave. in Manhattan screamed bloody murder at the proposals for a protected bike lane there. Funny thing happened, though: their revenues went way up, far faster than in the rest of the city. Walkable/bikeable/transit cities are successful cities, with larger tax bases to draw from.

The real waste of money, as well as lives, is our over-reliance on the private passenger car and the deadly suburban arterials shoved down our urban throats to enable it.

In the long run, rolling back that trend saves money, as well as lives.

But OK, you want an extra source of funding right now to help pay for Complete Streets? Fair enough. Raise the gas tax.

Posted on: 2015/4/9 19:24
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Re: 800+ pedestrians hurt, 19 killed, on JFK Blvd. in past 10 years
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elsquid wrote:
The improvements planned are fine, but very limited. MUCH more needs to be done.


How much more in taxes are you willing to pay to support these needs?

Posted on: 2015/4/9 19:08
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Re: 800+ pedestrians hurt, 19 killed, on JFK Blvd. in past 10 years
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The improvements planned are fine, but very limited. MUCH more needs to be done.

And it's not necessarily about throwing technology at the problem, putting in more warning signs and lights and fireworks telling everybody how dangerous it is and slow down, etc.

It's about rethinking the space physically so it just plain works better. It can be things as unexpected as planting trees or dropping planter pots in the right places, things that "make the road drive safer."

Posted on: 2015/4/9 18:57
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Re: 800+ pedestrians hurt, 19 killed, on JFK Blvd. in past 10 years
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Quote:

Giovanna wrote:
This grant is a terrific start:

$3 million going toward improving dangerous roadway in Jersey City


Thanks Governor Christie!

Posted on: 2015/4/9 18:54
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Re: 800+ pedestrians hurt, 19 killed, on JFK Blvd. in past 10 years
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Posted on: 2015/4/9 18:35
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Re: 800+ pedestrians hurt, 19 killed, on JFK Blvd. in past 10 years
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Here's a though-collect a fare from everyone using the Light Rail. Virtually no one gets away with not paying on the other lines.

Then have our Senator's lobby Washington for massive amounts of money-our Senators do a piss poor job of bringing back pork, and this would tie into what Obama is always preaching-shovel ready jobs, very green, helping the poor. Booker and Menendez are local to our congested areas and should be full tilt on this.

Posted on: 2015/4/9 18:02
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Re: 800+ pedestrians hurt, 19 killed, on JFK Blvd. in past 10 years
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By the way, for anyone who wants to tie road redesign to increased funding for mass transit -- and we should definitely want the latter -- today happens to be Stand Up for Transit Day.

Tell Trenton and Washington that we demand more and better trains, buses, light rails, ferries ...

As we tell City Hall that we support protected bike lanes, more pedestrian amenities, bus shelters, and other items under municipal control.

Posted on: 2015/4/9 17:54
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Re: 800+ pedestrians hurt, 19 killed, on JFK Blvd. in past 10 years
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Please people, for every pedestrian behaving badly I see 20 drivers being even worse. I was walking down 8th and talking on the phone but totally aware of my surroundings. As I got to Erie I was looking at the traffic and some car tried to jump the stop sign to make a right. I stopped them as I stepped into the crosswalk and the girl passenger was like "GET OFF THE PHONE!" but I was like "No, nice try but I saw you the whole time bitches! You gotta WAIT."

Posted on: 2015/4/9 17:40
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Re: 800+ pedestrians hurt, 19 killed, on JFK Blvd. in past 10 years
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Fort Lee had this problem and they implemented a sensible, practical solution.

They started ticketing pedestrians who text while they walk in the street.

http://www.cbsnews.com/news/texting-w ... alking-banned-in-nj-town/

Posted on: 2015/4/9 17:27
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Re: 800+ pedestrians hurt, 19 killed, on JFK Blvd. in past 10 years
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The most egregious thing I've seen has been in JSQ going south where JSQ turns into Bergen Ave and intersects with Sip Ave. There are 4 lanes at that intersection. One that is right turn only and always has 2-4 cars parked there (why don't cops ticket there? easy money), 2 that keep heading south, and one that is left turn only and has it's own light.

At that intersection, I saw a guy cross on sip going east from the dunkin donuts. The light for traffics going south was green. This fucker hops across like he is Frogger, standing between lanes as cars zip by, waiting for an opening so he can scurry to the next spot between lanes, and he continues this way until he gets to the median.

What does he do at the median? He spots a bus going north that he wants to either catch or outrun. The bus is going slowly on the right most lane going north. This idiot starts running north in the left and center lanes until he (on foot) overtakes the bus in the right most lane. All of this while holding a coffee cup.

What is wrong with people? This is why people get run over.

Posted on: 2015/4/9 17:19
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Re: 800+ pedestrians hurt, 19 killed, on JFK Blvd. in past 10 years
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Quote:

moobycow wrote:
While I agree about idiot pedestrians, the problem with the don't walk signal while the cars have a green for turning is that too many intersections in JC have walk signals that simply won't turn without someone having pushed the button during the last cycle.

So you wind up with people conditioned to watch for a red in the other direction and then start walking because the pedestrian signals aren't worth sh!t and you don't know if you're actually not supposed to walk or you have a signal that is not going to run on this cycle.


Indeed. Forcing people to press intermittently useful "beg buttons" to ask the almighty car to allow them to walk through their own city is one more aspect of our profound disregard for anyone not driving.

Many times what appears to be an idiot pedestrian or cyclist is a confused, frustrated, or intimidated person trying to pick his or her way through an extremely hostile environment. Other times they are people with mobility impairments or various frailties that wouldn't be a big problem if they weren't trying to cross the Indianapolis Speedway.

Idiots or no, they don't deserve to die or get maimed. They're people.

Posted on: 2015/4/9 17:13
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Re: 800+ pedestrians hurt, 19 killed, on JFK Blvd. in past 10 years
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While I agree about idiot pedestrians, the problem with the don't walk signal while the cars have a green for turning is that too many intersections in JC have walk signals that simply won't turn without someone having pushed the button during the last cycle.

So you wind up with people conditioned to watch for a red in the other direction and then start walking because the pedestrian signals aren't worth sh!t and you don't know if you're actually not supposed to walk or you have a signal that is not going to run on this cycle.

Posted on: 2015/4/9 16:53
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Re: 800+ pedestrians hurt, 19 killed, on JFK Blvd. in past 10 years
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>>the solution should address driving demand, specifically by lowering the need to drive places by expanding and improving public transit. <<

The solution, should, of course, do that too. Complete Streets policies include better accommodation for mass transit, though we still have to fund and organize it.

But it's simply wrong to say that reducing our overbuilt multilane arterials is untenable. It's being done all over, and it works. In fact, there's plenty of evidence that expanding mass transit without reducing urban car lanes and basically free parking DOESN'T work, because you're still incentivizing driving and car ownership, thus starving any new mass transit of riders and revenue.


All this is happening right now in NYC, including less-dense outer boroughs. It will take longer here, because the density isn't here yet. But it's coming, and it will happen here.

Posted on: 2015/4/9 16:52
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Re: 800+ pedestrians hurt, 19 killed, on JFK Blvd. in past 10 years
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My favorite is the pedestrian with the cell phone stuck to the side of their head crossing the street and not bothering to look for on coming traffic. Do they really think everyone will watch out for them?

Posted on: 2015/4/9 16:48
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Re: 800+ pedestrians hurt, 19 killed, on JFK Blvd. in past 10 years
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Quote:

Monroe wrote:
One thing that would help, and it would need some adjustments from Trenton, is an absolute zero tolerance policy on drivers using cellphones. Revenue goes to Trenton from those tickets; maybe develop a 50/50 sharing program with local municipalities to incentivize them to write up the idiot drivers chatting and/or texting away.

Maybe create a new classification of cops, like the metermaids (or whatever they're called) to write the tickets at lower cost?


Also fine ideas, I would think. Enforcement priorities should adapt to the new distractions.

Posted on: 2015/4/9 16:48
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Re: 800+ pedestrians hurt, 19 killed, on JFK Blvd. in past 10 years
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Quote:

bodhipooh wrote:
Quote:

Monroe wrote:
Go to any JC intersection where there are turning arrows to allow cars to turn, while having the red hand to prevent pedestrians from crossing until the full green is displayed.

Pedestrians, almost 100%, ignore the red had and walk in front of crossing cars. Or go past any school after classes are done and see the kids blatantly jaywalking cross moving traffic.

Yes, there are plenty of idiot drivers. But you know what? Who loses in a contest between an idiot driver and an idiot pedestrian?


This is SO TRUE.

Without a doubt, there is plenty of blame to go around: too many idiot pedestrians, and too many aggressive drivers. Yes, we should improve conditions to ensure safer streets, but that will not curtail the proliferation of clueless or brazen pedestrians. The truth is that if a walk signal is in place at a busy road, the pedestrians SHOULD OBSERVE IT. You can't place the blame on a driver who is doing everything right because someone WALKS ONTO HIS ONCOMING PATH. Think of the clueless idiot glued to his phone while approaching a road and then proceeds to get on the road against the walk signal and without looking for traffic (have actually witnessed this) and is then surprised (and upset) to get honked at.

I also disagree with the statement that the sheriff's advice is "good in a vacuum". His advice is good, period. People should cross at the crosswalk. And, let me be clear, I am no apologists for aggressive drivers. As a cyclist, I despise the prevalent culture of aggressive drivers in JC. But, pedestrians are really, really not doing themselves a favor. I have had many walk onto my path as I ride my bike about town. People need to take responsibility for their actions and be more aware of their surroundings. Walking in congested areas with music blaring into your ears, with your eyes buried in something (book, magazine, newspaper, smartphone) is a recipe for disaster.


Complete agree. Further, I couldn't disagree more with the OP's solution of "Complete Streets," which according to him calls for eliminating car lanes and worsening the traffic in an already congested city. Talk about living in a fantasy land to think this is an acceptable solution for idiot pedestrians or aggressive drivers.

Some people just do not understand that cars are essentially required by most who need to go places they can't reach by public transit. Their approach to this problem is similiar to our failed drug war, if we attack the supply (and ignore the demand), the problem will magically solve itself! So they try to attack the supply of cars by calling for reduced or eliminated parking, or removing traffic lanes. As if by making driving even worse this means less people will drive.

No, the solution should address driving demand, specifically by lowering the need to drive places by expanding and improving public transit.

Posted on: 2015/4/9 16:45
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Re: 800+ pedestrians hurt, 19 killed, on JFK Blvd. in past 10 years
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One thing that would help, and it would need some adjustments from Trenton, is an absolute zero tolerance policy on drivers using cellphones. Revenue goes to Trenton from those tickets; maybe develop a 50/50 sharing program with local municipalities to incentivize them to write up the idiot drivers chatting and/or texting away.

Maybe create a new classification of cops, like the metermaids (or whatever they're called) to write the tickets at lower cost?

Posted on: 2015/4/9 16:42
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Re: 800+ pedestrians hurt, 19 killed, on JFK Blvd. in past 10 years
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When I say it's good in a vacuum, I'm pointing out that "pedestrians and cyclists need to be more careful" is often used to perpetuate a vacuum, that is, to avoid our collective responsibility to make roads safer.

You and I can't force each person to care about his or her life. Some won't. Some will die.

But we can do something about JFK Boulevard. Why aren't we?

Posted on: 2015/4/9 16:41
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Re: 800+ pedestrians hurt, 19 killed, on JFK Blvd. in past 10 years
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Pedestrians more commonly make choices than errors. Choices to jaywalk. Choices to ignore traffic signals meant to speed traffic and prevent congestion. Choices to walk with earbuds on at high volume so as not to be aware of their surroundings. And while this shouldn't result in a death sentence, it can-choices can have consequences.

And I say this as a biker, driver, and pedestrian.

Posted on: 2015/4/9 16:35
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