Sleepy Hollow Comprehensive Plan: Thoughts, Part 2

Planters and bollard in a street

Reducing through traffic via planters and a bollard

Chicane

Traffic calming via a chicane

2 Oct 2018

Dear Lucia and Simon:

We are following up on our first round of ideas for Sleepy Hollow's Comprehensive Plan.

Get Serious About Traffic Safety

We all make mistakes. Our streets need to account for that. Ensuring people drive at modest speeds means that when mistakes happen, people aren't injured severely or killed.

Over 240 people were injured (25 seriously) in 430 car crashes in our Village between 2007 and 2016. 2 died.1 That's a huge physical and emotional toll. Beyond that, it costs around $4 million (based on national averages2).

This problem can be dramatically reduced. The Netherlands and Sweden have implemented policies that result in transportation mortality rates 1/4 of the USA's.3

They were able to accomplish this via widespread traffic calming; making walking, cycling and transit safe and convenient; plus reducing through traffic on residential streets. (photos on right)

As a bonus, it makes the Village a nicer place to visit and live.

Smoother speed hump in the Netherlands

Smoother Standards for Speed Humps

Speed humps reduce speeding.4 Unfortunately, the profile of the humps we implemented in Sleepy Hollow make for a jarring, unsafe cycling conditions. The Netherlands have worked out better speed hump designs (photo on left), which we should adopt.

Advisory shoulder

Advisory Shoulders

In locations where car access is necessary and streets are narrow, "advisory shoulders" (photo on right) can be helpful.

Manor Connector

We updated our RiverWalk page to mention the most effective way5 to complete the trail between the Manors is making Riverside Dr usable only by people walking and cycling. This will make Sleepy Hollow Manor and Philipse Manor more pleasant and safer by reducing the real and present danger, noise, and pollution from cars. People who insist on driving through the neighborhoods can do so via Broadway.

Pine Close - OCA Connection

Connection between the Old Croton Aqueduct and Pine Close so southern Webber Park residents can access it without going on Bedford Rd. (map on left) Avoiding Bedford Rd is good due to poor sight lines, narrow lanes, speeds, steepness of the hill and distance.

Adding a contraflow bike lane on Pine St would create a safer, legal way for residents to access their homes on this one way street and the Aqueduct.

Old Croton Aqueduct @ High School

The OCA is cut off by one of the High School's corridors. We should put reconnecting this on our long term wish list. Some possible solutions are:

  1. Use the actual Aqueduct tunnel to walk and bike through! Cool and educational. Minimal school involvement. The tunnel is 7.5' wide and 8.5' high, which is not optimal, but could work.
  2. Make the school walkway dip down through the Aqueduct, putting glass on the sides so you can see into the Aqueduct cross section
  3. A trail bridge over the school
Shrubs blocking the sidewalk on Beekman Ave, just west of Broadway

Shrubs blocking the sidewalk on Beekman Ave, just west of Broadway

Shrubs Blocking Sidewalks

Several property owners fail to prune their greenery to ensure sidewalks remain clear. The Village needs to take education and enforcement measures to ensure walkability.

It's a matter of equity. 45% of households in the Inner Village don't have access to a car. A tremendous segment of residents don't want to or can't drive. If the shrubs were blocking the street, DPW would remove them immediately. People walking should get similar first class treatment.

FlexiModal palate truck / bike trailer, in cycling mode FlexiModal palate truck / bike trailer, in walking mode

FlexiModal palate truck / bike trailer

Village Vehicle Fleet

Bike trailer carrying 3 garbage cans

Healthy Soil Compost's bike trailer

Considering the small size of our village, the administration should adjust its vehicle fleet. There are many task that would be better served by smaller vehicles, electric vehicles and bicycles/tricycles (with class 1 electric assistance where applicable). Village employees who walk, bike or take transit to work should receive a parking cash out.

This would introduce significant cost savings and reduce environmental and crash related harms.

Sincerely,

--Dan

More Comp Plan information is on our Sleepy Hollow Comprehensive Plan Home Page.


  1. Accident Location Information System (ALIS)
  2. What's the Actual Average Cost of a Car Accident?
  3. OECD
  4. Seattle DOT
  5. Speed Bumps are not effective "traffic calming" but an ineffective "Band-Aid" for poorly designed streets. Examples of more effective ways to calm traffic

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