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Push on for local Slow Zones

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These groups and city agency want drivers to SLOW DOWN.

Community Board 11, along with the Northeast Bronx Association and NYC Department of Transportation, are teaming up to get a Neighborhood Slow Zone Program in their district — covering Morris Park, Pelham Parkway, Pelham Gardens and Allerton.

Neighborhood Slow Zones are a community-based initiative that seek to reduce the speed limit from 30 mph to 20 mph.

They also add safety measures such as signs and speed bumps within a select area to change driver behavior, according to DOT officials.

The ultimate goal of the program is to lower the number of accidents in a targeted area and enhance neighborhood quality of life by reducing traffic cutting through and the noise that comes with it.

The DOT creates such Slow Zones in response to applications from communities.

The three areas being considered within Community Board 11 are:

•Slow Zone One, bordered by Laconia Avenue on the west, Mace Avenue on the north, Wilson Avenue to the east, and Pelham Parkway North at the South boundary.

•Slow Zone Two, bordered by Eastchester Road on the west, Mace Avenue on the north, Tiemann Avenue to the east, and Pelham Parkway North at the south boundary.

•Slow Zone Three, bordered by Lodovick Avenue on the west, Mace Avenue north, Gun Hill Road to the east and Stillwell Avenue as the south boundary.

The areas were targeted after complaints about drivers who ignore the speed limits and stop signs, said Northeast Bronx Association president Vinny Prezioso.

“In Pelham Gardens, it’s almost a 100 percent residential neighborho­od,” Prezioso said. “We have a lot of schools and nursing homes around here, and we are getting a lot of complaints of cars zooming through these streets. They are using these side streets to come down so they can avoid lights along Pelham Parkway.”

Prezioso said the association has spoken to police about it, they can only enforce the law when they catch people speeding.

“With the program, we will get a lot of signage, a change in the speed limit, and it could involve putting speed bumps in the area,” Prezioso said, all of which he feels will help.

“We can’t put a stop light or stop sign on every corner,” he said, “so the only way to try to fix the problem is to implement this program.”

The DOT is currently working with the community to devise a plan to install the Slow Zones, though it is still in its initial stages.

The project has already received overwhelming support from area residents, Prezioso said.

CB 11 chairman Anthony Vitaliano said the board is collecting letters of support from various civic and community groups in the district.

“We have to have people show support first,” Vitaliano said. “This is a residential area, I live here, of course I would like to see things slow down.”

Kirsten Sanchez can be reach via e-mail at ksanchez@cnglocal.com or by phone at (718) 742-3394

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