Today’s news:

‘Shore’ thing: Neighbors say Ridge road’s a crash zone

The Brooklyn Paper

Shore Road has become a demolition derby where speeding cars careen out of control and crash into parked vehicles as they try to negotiate a blind curve, and it’s only a matter of time before someone gets hurt, say neighbors who want the city to slow the cars down.

Cars routinely speed along the area directly in front of Xaverian High Schoolat speeds of more than 40 miles-per-hour, despite the fact that the speed limit nearby is 15 miles-per-hour during school hours, residents claim.

And Evie Wexler says that speeding vehicles have smashed up her beloved Volkswagen twice in the past 18 months because there is nothing slowing down reckless drivers.

“It’s a danger zone,” she said of the winding road between MacKay Place and 69th Street.

Last July, a Belt Parkway-bound motorcycle skidded out of control and slid into her parked car. Then, two weeks ago, her car was parked in the same spot and got slammed into again, this time by a car that pushed it onto the sidewalk and causing $10,000 in damage.

There also aren’t any crosswalks across Shore Road, which means that pedestrians strolling along the promenade or walking out to the 69th Street Pier have to play Frogger if they want to get across the street in one piece.

“I try not to walk my dogs between 3 and 4 pm because it’s a lunatic asylum out here,” said Carol Mahoney, who lives directly in front what she says is ground zero for car crashes. “I don’t know why the cops don’t sit out here and ticket because it’s a speedway. It goes on all day long,”

Cops from the 68th Precinct say that they have received complaints at that location and regularly have officers patrol the area.

Neighbors are split as to whether there should be a stop sign or a traffic signal, but they all agree: the city needs to act before someone gets hurt.

Shore Road has two stop signs in the area — one on 75th Street, and another on 69th Street. But the six blocks of unfettered driving makes drivers think that they’re in an Acura commercial, said Wexler.

“When there’s an open roadway, people take advantage of it,” she said.

The city denied that the area is dangerous, but promised to check it out after we contacted them about the complaints.

“We will study this location to determine if any changes are appropriate,” said Department of Transportation spokesman Monty Dean, who said that there has never been a fatality on that block, and there has only been one injury from 2006 to 2010.

Justin Brannan, spokesman for Councilman Vincent Gentile (D–Bay Ridge), said that his office plans to request that the city install a stop sign.

Reach reporter Dan MacLeod at dmacleod@cnglocal.com or by calling him at (718) 260-4507. You can also follow his Tweets at @dsmacleod.

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henry ford from bay ridge says:
Lol, a demolition derby?!? Hyperbole much? What a bunch of anti-car hysteria condensed together. Guess what, cars are not going away. Get used to it. Enforce traffic laws, and weed out the bad apples. No one is against that.

Nov. 29, 2011, 5 am
mike from GP says:
Wow, that street looks overly wide, even with the bike lane on it. Definitely a candidate for a road diet. True, there haven't been many injuries on it, but that could be because it's discouraging pedestrian traffic.

And things like stop signs and traffic lights are probably not appropriate -- they only suggest that drivers slow down. Actual traffic calming (narrowing the street, bulb outs, traffic humps, bike lanes, etc) will force drivers to slow down. That's what you want. Unfortunately Gentile has a history of being against such solutions.
Nov. 29, 2011, 7:21 am
mike from GP says:
And henry ford -- it's not "anti-car" hysteria for neighbors to complain when drivers smash into their cars. Silly.
Nov. 29, 2011, 7:24 am
Jay from Bay Ridge says:
I saw some motorcycle racing team on that Shore Road area just last week. The traffic is so light and most people driving at normal speed there, just some Nascar wannabes with little driving skills.
Nov. 29, 2011, 7:53 am
Sy from Bay Ridge says:
Thank goodness the NYPD is in prospect park! 20 mph bikes are much worse than 40 mph cars.

What does Tal Barzilai think?
Nov. 29, 2011, 9:40 am
Burns from Ditmas Park says:
There's no chance the NYPD will do their job here. They don't ticket cars in known problem streets with multiple deaths/injuries. Why would they bother here?

Most of the drivers in this city should be on the verge of having their license taken away. But, instead, they probably all have spotless records.

But yes. Let's use a half dozen police or more to set up ridiculous bicycle control stations in the park. That's an appropriate prioritization of limited resources. Ugggh.
Nov. 29, 2011, 10:16 am
S from PPW says:
The NYPD is completely derelict in its duty here. Does someone have to die before they act?
Nov. 29, 2011, 10:21 am
NYPD from Prospect Park says:
Sorry, we're too busy busting cyclists.
Nov. 29, 2011, 10:49 am
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
There go the cycling zealouts again always blaming cars which don't do anything wrong while not saying anything about cyclists who flout the law everywhere they go? Every single one of the drivers have a license and license plates but the same can not be said for Streetsbloggers and you Transportation Alternatives types. If Evie Wexler doesn't want her car smashed maybe she is not parking it correctly? Seriously, why is everything blamed on cars when it is cyclists who cause the majorities of injuries and deaths in Brooklyn. It is time for cyclists to ride on Shore road and slow down cars if that's what they want.
Nov. 29, 2011, 10:54 am
cars are people too from sprawlville, NY says:
That's right Tal, cars just want to be loved and go fast, who can blame them or their drivers just because those pesky parked cars get in the way of a drag race. I love the bikes cause the majorities of injuries and deaths in Brooklyn bit. Sorry but that would be cars and guns idiot.
Nov. 29, 2011, 11:11 am
Eddie Mazz from Bay Ridge says:
Speeding and Reckless Driving is a Major problem in All of Bay Ridge, Bath Beach and Bensonhurst!
Nov. 29, 2011, 12:26 pm
Joe Blow from Bay Ridge says:
The primary law enforcement priority of the 68th Prec is revenue generation, by issuing parking tickets to cars that are stationary. Aside from an occasional "crackdown" on seat belt useage or talking on a cell phone while driving, the 68 has absolutely no interest in issuing moving violations, even when the violation occurs right in front of a patrol car (I've seen patrol cars ignore stop sign and red light violations that happen 25 feet in front of their windshield. The bottom line is that this is a leadership issue. Until the 68's commanding officer makes writing moving violation tickets a priority, the 68 will continue to ignore the speeding, illegal turns and otherwise dangerous driving that takes place on a daily basis.
Nov. 29, 2011, 12:49 pm
Joey from Clinton Hills says:
I was just biking on Shore Road this weekend...speedbumps might work or they just might add to the number of parked cars that are getting hit!
Nov. 29, 2011, 1:17 pm
Shore road from Bay Ridge says:
Speeding is a problem up and down Shore road but particularly in the section mentioned. Not sure how this turned into a cyclist issue when cyclists are not mentioned as a problem. It sounds quite ignorant for Tal to say Ms. Wexler did not park her car correctly. The photo of her car shows that it was pushed up onto the sidewalk from a legal spot. A car going the posted 15MPH could not have caused that damage. Or maybe Tal is right and she just parked her car against a tree and on the sidewalk.
Nov. 29, 2011, 1:17 pm
Joe Blow from Bay Ridge says:
If this happened at night (during the 12 to 8 tour) the few squad cars assigned to patrol duty may have been "cooping" (sleeping in the squad car while parked in a secluded area). During early morning runs over the years I've spotted 68 Prec cars cooping in a variety of spots, including at the top of the hill in Owl's Head Park; behind Ft. Hamilton HS (near the back doors to the cafeteria loading dock) and at several isolated spots on the path inside of Shore Road Park, from the 80's to the Bridge. Even if they were motivated to write moving violations (which they are not), you can't do it while sleeping. because the 68 is such a low crime area, the cops and commanders assigned to it get to slack off. Again, this is a leadership issue.
Nov. 29, 2011, 1:57 pm
Burns from Ditmas Park says:
Reckless driving *is* crime and it does kill people. It's a matter of when, not if. That's the core of this issue. The NYPD don't see it that way.
Nov. 29, 2011, 2:02 pm
Jay from Bay Ridge says:
the next community meeting at 68 should be a full house with concerns on speeding, graffiti, and tires vandalism in Bay Ridge.
Nov. 29, 2011, 2:57 pm
tom murphy from sunset park says:
Some years ago I too lost a car on Shore Rd. to a speeding BMW in the middle of the night. The driver and his three passengers all ended up in Lutheran MC.
BTW: no where in the article do I see mentioned the legal speed on Shore Road: 25 MPH, not 30 or 40. The DOT knows how dangerous this winding road is and is trying to alert the drivers. Perhaps more prominent signage might just scare the forgetful drivers.
Nov. 29, 2011, 5:08 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
First off, I was not here today 10:54 especially when I was at work where there is no computer there at all, and I know who it could be. I don't support reckless driving and I believe it should be stopped. However, to blame just a few motorists on all is really stepping boundaries. How would any cyclists like it if I blamed all of them just for a few? I am sure many of you would be crying foul on that, so neve do something on others you wouldn't want them to do to you. Just enforce the rules rather than force a complete redesign that will make the roads even worse. One other thing, cut it out with the impersonations already, because it just shows how low some of you can go on it!
Nov. 29, 2011, 7:11 pm
Mike from Williamsburg says:
Anything the city does to slow down cars is a tax on Bay Ridge.
Nov. 29, 2011, 7:22 pm
jack from Carroll Gardens says:
Drivers are just plain lucky that the police are not sitting there in unmarked cars or on mororcycles. Are there any schools nearby? If that took place in Broward County FL, The police would be hiding with morotcycles or in unmarked cars and flag the speeders. They speed through a school zone, the fines are doubled.
Nov. 30, 2011, 10:46 pm
JL from Bay Ridge says:
In reference to the owner of the parked car, Evie, not parking it correctly, that's quite silly (Tal Barzilai) I live right nearby where this happened and HEARD the crash. The person driving the car that hit her parked vehicle was entirely to blame, NOT the owner of the parked car.

Furthermore, this is a problem area for speeding and drivers to can't seem to get it through their heads that they need to stay on the right side of the road. I frequently see drivers driving over the yellow line for some reason.

I think a traffic light by McKay place or 71st may help with some of these issues.
Dec. 5, 2011, 12:21 pm

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