The breakneck traffic along Flatlands Avenue will be moving a little slower in the next few weeks now that the city is poised to put in a new traffic light at East 96th Street.
State Senator John Sampson told Canarsie residents about the light during a special Saturday morning meeting with members of the South Canarsie Civic Association.
“It’s a very busy intersection,” explained Sampson spokesman Michael Roberts. “Many people, especially the elderly, find it difficult to cross.”
The city’s Department of Transportation (DOT) confirmed that the request for the light, which, ironically, is down the block from Sampson’s office on East 96th Street, was approved claiming that the corner had “met the warrants for a traffic signal.”
“One is expected to be installed in the coming weeks,” a DOT spokesman said.
“I drive past this area myself and there is a great potential for traffic accidents and danger to individuals on foot,” Sampson explained in a statement. “There is no doubt in my mind that there is a need to install a street light at the East 96th Street and Flatlands Avenue area. The flow of traffic in both directions %u2013 along Flatlands Avenue – is just so heavy that it makes crossing the street very difficult for pedestrians.”
“I am particularly concerned about the danger posed to our senior citizens and those individuals with physical challenges,” he said.
Roberts said that Sampson’s office filed the light request with the DOT after several constituents told them how difficult it is to cross the intersection.
Officials at Community Board 18 said they were told in July that the light would be installed at the corner as early as November 30. It was unclear what caused the delay as this paper went to press.