Groups make Lackawanna road safer, in a colorful way

Lackawanna

LACKAWANNA, N.Y. (WIVB) — After complaints of drivers speeding through an area that’s popular for kids, groups in WNY came together to take action. Many neighbors around Jeffrey A. Taggart Memorial Playground, in Lackawanna, saw drivers speeding through the area many kids play in.

“Yes, this park is usually full,” 12-year-old Felise Fears said.

Fears said the park is a very popular area for her and friends.

“Lots of people are usually speeding through, and it’s really dangerous because there are lots of kids running in and out of the park,” she said.

So Fears and others at a local church helped paint crosswalks and bump-outs on the road outside the playground.

“They (bump-outs) actually narrow your vision, and makes you feel like it’s a narrower spot for people to get through, which slows people down,” Rebecca Reilly said, the GoBike Buffalo operations and outreach director.

The project was implemented with support from GoBike Buffalo and the Cornell Cooperative Extension. Rebecca Reilly, with GoBike, knows how important this work is: her mother was hit by a car in the city of Buffalo. And she said these street pop-ups really work.

“We did the road diet at MLK Park, on Fillmore and we saw people slowing down immediately.”

In the next week, rubber curbs and speed bumps will be added to the road in Lackawanna. The work is temporary, but if the area sees a positive difference, the city can decide if a permanent solution is needed.

“Hopefully after this project, these residents will see a difference in traffic… the way people approach this, and then they can go to their city council and say, ‘Next step, we want this permanent, we want a permanent change,” Marla Guarino said, with the Cornell Cooperative Extension.

GoBike Buffalo has implemented more than 300 pop-up crosswalks, bike lanes, bump-outs and more pedestrian friendly infrastructure through the Buffalo, Niagara area.

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