Saturday, October 31

Nassau Executive Curran Presents Downtown, Transit Strategies for Hicksville’s Revitalization

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Nassau County Executive Laura Curran unveiled a new report available here, developed by the Nassau County Department of Public Works (NCDPW), that provides eight detailed recommendations to improve traffic and pedestrian safety and accessibility in Downtown Hicksville, to ultimately attract business development and create a more vibrant downtown destination. The report was created with input from the Town of Oyster Bay, New York State, the LIRR and NICE bus to ensure each recommended project complements and supports ongoing revitalization efforts. These projects will serve as a critical link amongst all on-going efforts, helping to make Downtown Hicksville a better connected and more economically resilient area for people to live, work and play.

“Championing the development of vibrant, walkable downtown destinations near transit to attract new residents and businesses has been a priority of my Administration since day one, and I am very proud of the progress we’ve made on this front,” said Nassau County Executive Laura Curran. “With Hicksville being the largest and one of the most centrally located transportation hubs on Long Island, we cannot drag our feet on realizing the enormous potential for this area. With all parties at the table, I am confident we can continue to collaborate on our shared vision of a revitalized, sought after business district, as we look to fast track our economic recovery.”

The report is the culmination of months of collaborative work with Hicksville residents, business owners, elected officials and community partners and incorporates feedback from two public meetings with approximately 100 attendees as well as a walking tour and online interactive feedback tool. The recommendations are also based off the County’s comprehensive analysis of the area’s existing conditions. This included the assessment of current land use patterns, collecting traffic/pedestrian counts and conducting a traffic analysis of the project area, while accounting for proposed municipal zoning amendments and planning efforts.

Recommendations:

1. Broadway Downtown Streetscaping

In order to help the Broadway corridor from E John St to Old Country Rd function as a walkable downtown retail district and to encourage development and retail interest, streetscape improvements are recommended. Upgrading and making sidewalks and crosswalks accessible would promote pedestrian access from on-street parking as well as centralized parking areas that already exist.

2. Bike Routes and Facilities

Downtown Hicksville would greatly benefit from a connected network of bike lanes and bike parking areas, to improve access for cyclists to the station and throughout the downtown. The study recommends a total of 1.75 miles of new bike or shared use lanes on segments of Duffy Avenue, Heitz Place, Nelson Avenue and Newbridge Road.

3. Duffy Ave & Newbridge Rd

This major intersection sits one block south of the main LIRR Station entrance, so it serves a high volume of commuters in vehicles as well as on foot, in addition to several bus lines and a high volume of through traffic. The recommended strategy is to use excess space to tighten up moving lanes and create dedicated space for cyclists. These measures will create a traffic calming effect, as well.

4. Duffy Ave Mid-Block Crossing

The recommended solution to the existing crossing condition is to create a new signalized or controlled intersection on Duffy Ave, at the exit of the Town parking garage. Adding a signal and crosswalks would provide a safe crossing for the hundreds of commuters that cross here to use the walkway to the station.

5. John St Improvements

This short block of John St anchored by two high-volume intersections would benefit from a reconstruction to simplify the parking movements and provide longer left turn lanes on the inner approaches. Where feasible, additional measures to shorten pedestrian crossing distances would make this intersection less of a barrier for pedestrians.

6. Train Station Circulation & Ped Safety Improvements

The recommendations for this area respond to the commuter circulation needs present at the station. Private drop-off, pedestrian waiting areas, limited lanes surrounding the train station and enlarged pedestrian queue spaces will not only be beneficial to future developments, they are critical to the current functioning of this area.

7. Barclay Triangle & Kennedy Park Expansion

This recommendation calls for the removal of one of the southbound lanes on Jerusalem Ave. Removing that lane optimizes the alignment from Broadway onto Jerusalem and calms traffic as it enters Jerusalem Ave. Volumes on Jerusalem Ave were low enough to operate with one lane without causing delays, and the narrowed roadway will result in additional park space while slowing southbound traffic on Jerusalem Ave.

8. “Underline” Connection Under the LIRR Overpass

The strategy behind the “Underline” recommendation is to create a well-lit, covered, linear passageway with safer street crossings. With minor expansion in some areas, the linear connection already exists between Broadway and Newbridge Rd. Additional elements such as distinctive lighting and context-sensitive pedestrian crossings would tie the linear spaces together and create a striking distinction from the surrounding area.

Next Steps:
In the weeks and months ahead, the Department will be coordinating with each responsible jurisdiction on potential federal and state grant funding opportunities and respective roles in implementing the recommendations. Recommendations were designed so that each could be completed separately as funding becomes available.

During the project’s next phases – Design and Engineering, followed by Construction – the conceptual recommendations in this report will be studied further and additional public input will be solicited before moving forward with implementation.


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