Elected officials are calling on the city to repaint the lane lines and other traffic markers along a 1.5-mile stretch of Northern Boulevard from College Point Boulevard to 156th Street.
The Department of Transportation (DOT) started a repaving project last fall that delays stretched into the winter. Now the agency says it is too cold for the thermoplastic lane markings it uses to stick, leaving drivers to contend with, in some spots, a six-lane-wide expanse of completely black pavement.
“It is dangerous for both drivers and pedestrians, especially in the evening,” said State Senator Toby Stavisky.
At a press conference last Friday afternoon at Northern Boulevard and Main Street, Stavisky highlighted the deadly bus crash at the exact same intersection in September of 2017. She said while lane markers wouldn’t have prevented the accident, it did highlight the already-dangerous conditions on Northern Boulevard.
“We understand that delays happen, but Northern Boulevard is a Vision Zero Priority Corridor,” added Councilman Peter Koo. “Whatever dangers already exist on this busy thoroughfare are significantly exacerbated.”
DOT did add some temporary white lane markings in January, but those have since faded. A spokesperson for the agency said they have been in touch with the elected officials and will be adding more temporary markings this week, weather permitting.
Last month, Koo introduced a bill that would require all pavement markings to be repainted within one week of the completion of street resurfacing work.
“This is mandatory after the completion of a project,” said Community Board 7 district manager Marilyn McAndrews. “We feel that one week is ample time.”