Locals call for mayor to take ‘immediate action’ after moped rider injured on McGuinness Boulevard

McGuinness Boulevard at Meeker Avenue
After a driver hit and injured a moped rider on McGuinness Boulevard near Meeker Avenue on Thursday, locals are criticizing the mayor for delaying the planned redesign of the road.
Photo courtesy of Google Maps

Northern Brooklyn pols and local activities have criticized the mayor’s office for the delay in implementing a safety redesign on Greenpoint’s McGuinness Boulevard after a delivery rider was injured on the stretch of road Thursday.

The local community group, Make McGuinness Safe, say they have had enough of “the carnage and the danger” as their two-year long fight for safety improvements to the highway-like road drags on.

A moped rider was left with a broken leg after being hit by a driver who was fleeing the scene of a nearby collision, according to cops, who arrested and charged the 57-year-old man from Queens following the incident.

Following a preliminary investigation, cops determined that the Queens man, who was driving a 2016 Toyota, was fleeing the scene of a collision with another vehicle when he allegedly struck a 20-year-old moped rider on McGuinness Boulevard, and also struck numerous parked cars at the intersection of Meeker Avenue, where McGuinness Boulevard turns into Humboldt Street. 

mcguinness boulevard crash
Cops said the driver struck the moped driver while fleeing the scene of another crash. Photo courtesy of Make McGuinness Safe/Instagram

“A safety plan would be under active construction right now if it was not being actively blocked by wealthy donors to the Mayor at Broadway Stages. Shame on them. Shame on the inaction in the face of a mortal danger to our neighborhood,” the group wrote on social media.

Mayor Eric Adams previously withdrew his support of a planned redesign of McGuinness Boulevard, which had been finalized after months of community meetings with the Department of Transportation.

Adams ordered the DOT to come up with an alternative to the road diet, which would have seen the removal of one vehicle lane in each direction in favor of a bike lane, after opposition group “Keep McGuinness Moving” — a coalition of local businesses led by Broadway Stages — ramped up its criticism of the plan.

The death of Matthew Jensen, a P.S. 110 teacher who was killed in a hit-and-run in 2021 on the road which stretches 1.5 miles from the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway at Meeker Avenue to the Pulaski Bridge, galvanized the community movement for a safety redesign.

Thursday’s crash was one block from where Jensen was killed, prompting activities to ask: “What will be enough for the mayor and our city to take action?”

Reacting to the most recent crash, a group of Northern Brooklyn politicians issued a statement saying that this incident was “entirely predictable and underscores once again why the McGuinness Boulevard redesign is so badly needed.”

matthew jensen mcguinness
The crash occurred just a block from where schoolteacher Matthew Jensen (pictured) was hit and killed in 2021. File photo courtesy of Lisa Summa

“This one mile stretch is an epicenter of traffic violence in our community, where we experience an average of one crash resulting in an injury every single week,” U.S. Rep. Nydia Velázquez, Brooklyn Borough President Antonio Reynoso, Assembly Member Emily Gallagher, state Senator Kristen Gonzalez, and Council Member Lincoln Restler said in a co-signed statement.

“Lives are being put at risk. We need immediate action by the Mayor’s office to implement the Department of Transportation’s proposed safety improvements so that everyone in our community can feel confident that McGuinness Boulevard will not cause more tragedies,” the group concluded.

City Hall and representatives from “Keep McGuinness Moving” did not immediately respond to requests for comment on the incident.