First it was Vanderbilt, then Washington, now the DOT is planning to bring traffic calming measures to Classon Avenue.
The revamp will take place on Classon Avenue between President Street (where it also intersects with Washington Avenue, just south of Eastern Parkway) and Flushing Avenue.
“We’ve had a number of incidents on Classon Avenue, and right now people are exceeding the speed limit,” said Councilwoman Letitia James who asked the DOT to look at traffic calming measures for the strip.
Between 2005 and 2009 there were 357 injuries from traffic accidents, an average of 71.4 a year, putting Classon Avenue in the 76 percentile for accidents in the borough (meaning three-quarters of the streets in Brooklyn are safer than Classon), according to the DOT.
The plan is reduce the avenue from two 10-foot lanes to one 11-foot lane and extra-wide parking lanes of 10- to 13-feet. Areas near busy intersections will still have two lanes including Eastern Parkway, Leffert’s Place and Dekalb Avenue. (See the full DOT plan here.)
Most notably, due to the traffic back-ups at Atlantic, Classon Avenue will have three lanes for the half-block south of Atlantic to allow more cars to “stack” while waiting for the light. The extra lane will be formed by eliminating 11 parking spaces.
Unlike Washington and Vanderbilt, there is no plan for a bike lane on Classon Avenue, although the extra-wide parking lanes will give bikers more space.
The DOT received support from the four community boards that the changes affect, including Prospect and Crown Heights’ Community Board 8 earlier this month. Work is slated to take place in March and April of 2012.
Michelle George, Community Board 8’s district manager, said there’s been a “definite improvement” along Washington Avenue since it was changed to a single lane over the summer.
“The cars and the bikes now know what lane to be in and the traffic is much better," she said. "I’m sure it will do the same for Classon."