From the Times Ledger:
The construction of traffic islands on College Point Boulevard has created a number of traffic problems and an increase in accidents since it started, community leaders say.
The long rectangular curbs that serve as partitions for pedestrians trying to cross busy roads have caused headaches for drivers, said Community Board 7 District Manager Marilyn Bitterman.
“It’s a total traffic nightmare over there,” she said at a district service cabinet meeting last week.
When the traffic islands were first built in October, they lacked the proper signs and markings to warn drivers of their presence, Bitterman said.
“If you’re putting in a center island, put it in and put the proper signage and markings at one island and then move onto your second one,” she said about the project, which has been drawn out over the last four months.
A police source said accidents in the area with the new traffic islands skyrocketed by 400 percent after they were first put in.
The city Department of Design and Construction, the agency in charge of the traffic islands’ construction, installed yellow bollards and white plastic delineators around the partitions in the end of November so that drivers would see them.
A spokesman for DDC said the project is expected to be finished in the spring or as soon as the weather allows for the road to be paved and marked. The project’s contractors cannot pave the road while it has snow on it, he said. DDC believes the traffic islands will make the street safer for pedestrians and motorists.
City Department of Transportation officials said they were confident traffic problems would be alleviated once the project is complete.