May 5, 2017
You have probably seen the construction on the roadways near 11 West 25th Street, 1123 Broadway and 1133 Broadway and wondered: What is going on and when will they finish?
The Department of Transportation (DOT) is testing a new traffic and pedestrian configuration for Broadway and 5th Avenue from 25th Street to 23rd Street, including the Flatiron North Public Plaza, ‘Pork Chop’ area, and Worth Square. Changes made by the Department of Transportation over the past five years have significantly improved the pedestrian safety in the area where Fifth and Broadway converge. The department’s improvements have also added new beauty and livability to what several years ago was an asphalt no man’s land.
The most significant change under the current plan will be to reverse the direction of traffic on Broadway from 24th to 25th Street and transform the block into a “Shared Street” by using distinctive paving on the roadbed similar to what’s on the plazas and creating an environment where motorists are advised to drive at 5 MPH and pedestrians are invited to walk in the roadway (sort of like a driveway). You’ll notice many other changes in signal lights, turn lanes, pedestrian signals and walkways at numerous corners in the area.
DOT began work Monday, April 24th, and its work should take roughly two weeks, during which time there will be orange barrels used to direct traffic and demarcate pedestrian space. Once DOT’s work is complete, the furniture and BID assets (planters, granite blocks, etc.) will be relocated back into the Plaza and Pork Chop between May 4th and May 7th.
After implementation, DOT will monitor and evaluate the plan throughout the spring and summer and return to the Madison Square Park Conservancy, BID and CB5 with a presentation on how the plan is working. If successful, this new configuration will serve as the basis of the permanent redesign and reconstruction of this entire space, including the long-discussed renewal of Worth Square and its memorial, making the area around the square a new iconic space in NoMad.