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Community members attend rally to protest city’s plan to transform nearby streets

Those who oppose the changes say Underhill Avenue was never unsafe but now has become an “obstacle course,” thanks to the city’s techniques.

Phil Taitt and Adolfo Carrion

Sep 29, 2023, 12:51 AM

Updated 264 days ago


Community members in Prospect Heights attended a rally to protest New York City’s current plan to transform parts of the area’s roads into open streets. 
Many residents showed up at a rally to discuss an array of issues impacting their community, particularly about how Prospect Heights has become gridlocked due to the city’s Underhill Bike Boulevard.  
They say Underhill Avenue was never unsafe but now has become an “obstacle course,” thanks to the city’s techniques that now designate the corridor for bike riders with the addition of planters and small islands up and down the avenue.  
“I believe the biggest problem with this design is access for safety vehicles, firemen, ambulance, police,” said Denise Deyonker, a Prospect Heights resident. “All of those people to get through our neighborhood on that plaza… there is no egress for an ambulance or fire truck.” 
News 12 received the following statement from the Prospect Heights Neighborhood Development Council:
"NYC DOT has conducted extensive community engagement over the past three years to develop a sensible plan for Underhill Avenue that balances the needs of all street users. The narrowed street and mid-block traffic calming are designed to slow vehicle traffic and make the street safer for all residents. The FDNY has signed-off on this design and emergency vehicle access is not an issue.”

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