Fall 2000, p.9

'Illegal' Traffic Circles Working Well in Queens

Didn't think that there were traffic circles in NYC? Neither did we, until we heard about these circles out in Queens. In the late 1990s, T.A. lobbied the City for mini traffic circles-citing effectiveness at reducing crashes in Portland and Seattle-only to be told that they were not appropriate for NYC streets. Seems that nobody told the folks out in Queens, who have a number of them working very well on their streets for decades including a house on a traffic circle in College Point!

One question often asked about traffic circles is who will maintain them. Evidence from other cities suggest that neighborhood residents are more than happy to take care of the circles, and often use them as a chance to further beautify their neighborhood. A program similar to Brooklyn Borough President Howard Golden's Greenest Block contest-which drew scores of entries this year for a cash prize and the honor of being chosen the greenest block in Brooklyn-could further encourage neighborhood residents to take ownership and pride in their neighborhood. A similar contest for traffic circles or other landscaped traffic calming devices would involve an investment of only a few thousand dollars, and would be money extremely well spent.

Transportation Alternatives and the Neighborhood Streets Network will continue to press to make sure that these are not the only traffic circles that NYC sees.

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