Hit-and-Run a Reminder of Need to Fix Atlantic Ave

Dangerous corridor needs more pedestrian space and protection for bicyclists

Statement of Paul Steely White, Executive Director of Transportation Alternatives:

Transportation Alternatives is saddened by the news of a fatal hit-and-run on Atlantic Avenue in Brooklyn, and we renew our call on City officials to move forward with a safety redesign of the entire corridor.

Our condolences go out to the family and friends of 49-year-old Rodney Graham, who was hit by the drivers of two different cars as he attempted to cross Atlantic Avenue at Rockaway Avenue early Sunday morning. While the first driver to hit Graham remained at the scene, the second driver fled. Police are continuing their investigation to determine if Graham was in the crosswalk with the light, and if there should be a charge under the city’s Right of Way law. We also hope that the NYPD will locate the hit-and-run driver quickly, so that the individual can be held accountable, and the family of the victim can get their day in court.

As we wait for the outcome of the investigation, there is one thing we can already say with certainty: Atlantic Avenue is a highly dangerous street that must be redesigned along its entire length to make it less deadly, especially for its most vulnerable users, pedestrians and people on bikes. The entire corridor needs a complete street redesign with expanded safe space for pedestrians, along with protected bike lanes. The de Blasio administration has designated Atlantic Avenue as a “Vision Zero Great Street” in need of a redesign. We call on the Department of Transportation to move rapidly to fix the hazardous conditions that encourage speeding and failure to yield on Atlantic Avenue.