HUDSON HEIGHTS — Straphangers say an uptown subway entrance forces users into traffic because it exits onto a busy street that has no sidewalk.
The Bennett Avenue entrance to the 190th Street A train station connects the west side of the avenue to the main station at Fort Washington Avenue via a block-long pedestrian tunnel.
But when riders walk outside the Bennett Avenue exit, they're often forced to immediately cross the street because there's no sidewalk on the side of the street leading to Broadway, where many pedestrians head.
There is currently no crosswalk or signage at the station exit and it also lacks additional lighting and pedestrian-friendly curb cuts.
As a result, residents said they must contend with cars speeding around a curve on Bennett Avenue just west of Broadway, with the entrance's location difficult for drivers to see.
“It’s horrible,” said Margo Basset, 36. “You have to be really careful because cars come up this hill so quickly.”
Bassett, who crosses the street every day with her 2-year-old son and 1-year-old daughter, said it’s especially bad at night when pedestrians are less visible to passing cars.
“I’ve actually thought about putting reflectors all over the stroller and my kids to make us more visible,” she said.
There have been 14 motor vehicle collisions within a half-block of the station entrance since July 2012, according to NYPD stats.
Twelve of the crashes occurred near Broadway and Bennett Avenue and two happened near 190th Street and Bennett Avenue. One pedestrian was injured in a collision at the 190th Street intersection.
Because the data gives the cross streets of accident locations rather than specific addresses, it was not possible to tell if the collisions occurred in front of the A train station, which is just located just west of the intersection.
Locals said a crosswalk or speed bumps should be added to the road to prevent cars from speeding through uninterrupted.
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Elizabeth MacEnulty, 30, who has lived in the neighborhood for 25 years, said that lack of visibility is a major problem at the crossing point.
“It’s just the nature of that curve,” she said, noting that the station entrance is very inconspicuous. “You know how there are green lanterns for the underground subway entrances? There’s nothing like that here."
Maurice Owen-Michaane, who lives on Fort Washington Avenue, frequently uses the station entrance as a shortcut through Fort Washington Hill. He said this section of Bennett Avenue is difficult for pedestrians to navigate, especially for parents like him with small children in tow.
“There’s not even a way to do things by the book there,” Owen-Michaane said. “You have to cross and there’s no safe way to do it.”
He added that it’s especially challenging for parents walking with strollers.
“You sometimes have to walk for a stretch in the road because the cars are parked so tightly that you can’t get a stroller through,” he said.
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Owen-Michaane brought his concerns to a recent meeting of Community Board 12, suggesting the crossing receive similar treatment to the one at the 184th Street A train station at Overlook Terrace, which features stop signs and a crosswalk.
A Department of Transportation spokeswoman said that the agency completed a study of the area earlier this year and determined it did not meet the criteria for a stop-controlled crosswalk.
She noted that the DOT is currently looking into the possibility of installing other safety enhancements at the crossing, but did not provide details regarding which improvements the agency is considering.