May/June 1996, p.5

More Prospect Park Car-Free Hours?
Residents Pack Meetings But Board Nixes More Car-Free Hours

Read the latest news about this issue.

In a welcome move, the NYC Department of Transportation announced in March a plan to increase dramatically the time that Prospect Park is closed to car traffic. DOT planners, however, were ambushed at a meeting of Brooklyn community boards and withdrew the proposal. Community Board Six District Manager Craig Hammerman supported by Borough President Howard Golden harshly criticized the plan, saying the DOT had failed to consult the community adequately.

For years, Park Slope residents and other Brooklynites have pleaded with the city to increase the car-free hours in Prospect Park. Despite such overwhelming support, Hammerman said the car-free extension was "being rammed down the community's throat."

A frustrated group of Park Slope and Carroll Gardens residents expressed their frustration at two CB 6 meetings in April, hoisting signs and delivering impassioned pleas for hoard endorsement of more car-free hours. Over two nights, 50 T.A. members and other residents took the time to come to the meetings and state their case. No one spoke against the proposal. So many citizens demanded car-free hours that the board took the unusual step of closing the floor to speakers from the community.

Now CB 6, intent on controlling the process, is stalling its endorsement of a car-free hours extension.

The DOT's extensive traffic analysis shows a minimal to non-existent impact on the streets around the park. Relatively few cars even use the park; it could be closed to cars permanently with barely a ripple on surrounding streets.

T.A. thanks all the park lovers who took the time to stand up for a car-free Prospect Park. The board should honor the overwhelming wishes of the community and expand the car-free hours as planned.

Fax or write Borough President Howard Golden today!
Mail: 209 Joralemon Street, Brooklyn, NY 11201
Fax: 718-802-3959

Car-Free Prospect Park Hours
Current weekday car-free hours, April-October: 10 am-3 pm and 7 pm-7 pm
Proposed car-free hours: 9 am-5 pm and 7 pm-7 am
Weekends: closed 24 hours year-round