Traffic Problems on Prospect Park West, 8th Avenue and Union Street

During the first couple weeks of March, a team from Park Slope Neighbors was out with a radar gun and a video camera, sampling vehicle speeds on Prospect Park West and 8th Avenue, and also documenting gridlock at the intersection of 8th Avenue and Union Street. Because Prospect Park West has extra capacity the three southbound lanes are clearly more than adequate to handle the traffic volume cars have room to speed. While the posted speed limit is 30 miles per hour, we clocked a number of cars traveling at 40 mph or above, with the majority of cars traveling at 35 mph+. And we were recording speeds for less than 10 minutes when we clocked one car traveling at an incredibly dangerous 65 miles per hour. That was at three o'clock in the afternoon, with many people taking advantage of the warmest day of the year to visit Prospect Park.

We also checked the speeds of vehicles on 8th Avenue, which, though not as consistently high as they were on Prospect Park West, occasionally jumped into the mid-40 MPH range. In addition, we recorded scenes of gridlock and dangerous blocked crosswalks at the intersection of 8th Avenue and Union Street, on two occasions, one a weekend and one a weekday morning. The backups at this intersection occurred during nearly every traffic light cycle on both of our visits.