STUYVESANT TOWN — The Stuyvesant Town intersection where disgraced Nets star Jayson Williams crashed into a tree while driving under the influence has gotten a little bit safer.
Last weekend, the Department of Transportation installed a new traffic light on East 18th Street and Avenue C, along with pedestrian crossing signals, a spokesman confirmed Tuesday.
The push for a traffic light where there was once only a stop sign predates even the accident, which left Williams with a year’s worth of jail time.
Mark Thompson, chair of Community Board 6, said residents have been advocating for the light for about a decade. The DOT’s announcement was greeted with a round of applause during a Community Board 6 transportation committee meeting on Monday night.
“When Jayson had his issue, that helped bring it to the forefront,” Thompson said. “Maybe he wasn’t driving in a proper manner, but it really is a dangerous intersection.
Williams smashed his Mercedes SUV into a tree near the intersection early one January morning in 2010, and police found him sitting in the passenger seat, claiming the driver had fled.
After the accident, Larry Scheyer, a member of Community Board 6 and a Stuyvesant Town resident, shot video footage of the intersection and sent it to the Department of Transportation, said Thompson, himself a Stuy Town resident.
“I think what really did it was the video that Larry Scheyer took,” Thompson added, calling the new signal “one of those long-term things where you can make something good happen and improve safety.”