14+ Million Plays of Livable Streets Vids!
Browse Terms of Use

Sometimes #Sneckdown Dreams Come True!

Ah yes, that's the now-famous "Snowy Neckdown Redux: Winter Traffic Calming" Streetfilm above. As you may recall, I shot the video in my Queens neighborhood of Jackson Heights a few years ago to demonstrate how we could extend our curbs further into the streets to slow drivers and shorten pedestrian crossing distances. Then the idea completely blew up this winter with the #sneckdown hashtag causing a media sensation.

Now, as you can see in this series of photos, I can report some unexpected progress.

IMG_6673

In the last week, curb extensions have sprung up at many of the intersections I documented in the video (and photos). It looks like neckdowns will be installed at 81st, 82nd, 83rd, and 84th streets on 35th Avenue, a stretch that has seen its share of car violence, and maybe more are coming.

IMG_6677

Slowing traffic in this residential area is especially important. There are many schools nearby, and lots of senior citizens crossing 35th Avenue. And this type of traffic calming is perfectly aligned with the new 25 mph default speed limit set to take effect in NYC this fall.

IMG_6683

People in many other cities did their own photo documentation of sneckdowns this winter. It'll be interesting in the coming months and years to see if sneckdown mania helped lead other local DOTs to take action. Let me know via @Streetfilms on Twitter using the #sneckdown hashtag or tell us about it here in the comments.

8 Comments
  • Curb Jumping NYC

    Good start, but it could be bigger...

  • http://www.streetfilms.org/ Clarence Eckerson Jr.

    I agree. A little smaller than I would have wished, but this definitely will help.

  • dave “paco” abraham

    I loved the #sneckdown reports but realistically, did it have any effect on this specific neckdowns? Poured concrete is a capital project that likely had money allocated for it well before last year's snow storm. So, not sure the cause and effect is right in this case... that said... your coverage certainly may help fuel funding for future build outs! Keep up the awesome work Clarence!

  • http://www.streetfilms.org/ Clarence Eckerson Jr.

    I have no idea. But the original video was done almost 4 years ago. so plenty of time for these spaces to get in the pipeline. (And there is another linked article with photos from 3 years ago from these spots.) Plus DOT did retweet my tweets today of this article.

    And here is a bonafide 1:1 correlation from Philadelphia!http://philly.curbed.com/archives/2014/08/14/south-phillys-sneckdown-intersection-on-its-way-to-being-fixed.php

  • Ari_FS

    Aren't the traffic light poles usually moved along with the curb? The second photo, in particular, looks odd.

  • http://www.streetfilms.org/ Clarence Eckerson Jr.

    While I believe that might be optimal, if you want to save $$$ I think it is common to leave the street structures as they are. I have seen plenty where the poles remain. Also, I believe the pole in this photo is only a crosswalk signal pole, not a light pole. But I will check later today.

  • Kevin Love

    I love Clarence!

    Seriously, my three favorite videographers are Clarence, David Hembrow and Mark Wagunburr.

    If a picture is worth a thousand words, a good video is worth a million!

  • EcoAdvocate

    I'd rather have them leave the pole where it is and save the money---perhaps allowing the neckdown/bumpout work to be completed, vs. coming up with more money/delay in trying to move the light pole. Optimal, no, but better to reclaim some of that asphalt around this country for pedestrian (or even green space)!