Since crosswalk signals began malfunctioning on the Upper West Side last year, the problem has only gotten worse, with all the signals at nine intersections on the fritz along Central Park West this month.
City Councilwoman Gale Brewer’s office conducted a survey from Jan. 3-7 that found a far more serious rash of signals displaying the “walk” and “don’t walk” symbols simultaneously than a year ago.
She fired off a letter on Jan. 11 to the Department of Transportation, which fixed the signals.
“[DOT is] fixing them, only to have more malfunction,” said Brewer (D-Manhattan). “It can only get worse.”
amNewYork reported on Monday that broken signals are also starting to pop up in the outer boroughs.
"I've seen them here, I've seen them all over the city,” said Joseph Lamont of the Upper West Side. “Those signals are fundamental to the city, and they should work."
Mel Wymore, chairman of the Upper West Side’s Community Board 7, said it would be getting involved with tracking busted signals and could pass a resolution addressing them soon.
The DOT has explained that the malfunctions occur “occasionally” when the LEDs in the signals reach the end of their seven-year lifespan. The last of 100,000 signals citywide were installed in 2004 — so all of them are poised to break down.
“If you know that these signals are reaching the end, wouldn’t you perform preventive maintenance?” Brewer said.
DOT spokesman Monty Dean said that just because some signals are malfunctioning, “it doesn’t mean that they all will.”
“We certainly try to be as proactive as possible” in fixing the signals, Dean said. He said that DOT had independently identified some of the malfunctions mentioned in Brewer’s letter and deployed crews to fix them. He added that the contractors who installed the signals do their own surveys to finger malfunctions. (With Tim Herrera)
Brewer's list of problem signals
These are the locations where Brewer’s office spotted malfunctioning crosswalk signals this month:
• W. 63rd St. and Central Park West, all corners
• W. 69th St. and Central Park West, all corners
• W. 72nd St. and Columbus Avenue, northwest corner
• W. 73rd St. and Central Park West, all corners
• W. 85th St. and Central Park West, all corners
• W. 86th St. and Broadway, northwest corner
• W. 87th St. and Central Park West, all corners
• W. 89th St. and Central Park West, all corners
• W. 91st St. and Central Park West, all corners
• W. 93rd St. and Central Park West, all corners
• W. 95th St. and Central Park West, all corners