Lower Speed Limits, Traffic Cameras in School Zones Aim to Reduce Traffic Deaths

A speed limit sign. Image Credit: Google Maps

The City plans to expand the number of speed traffic cameras through 2021. On September 1, 2020, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced that through a coordinated effort between the Administration, the Department of Transportation (DOT), and the NYPD, speed limits will be reduced by five miles per hours on 25 miles of major streets, adherence to speed limits will be more strictly enforced, and speed cameras have been activated in all 750 school zones Citywide.

These safety measures are an expansion of the Administration’s Vision Zero initiative to end traffic deaths and injuries on New York City streets. Since the program began in 2014, the City’s traffic fatalities have declined more than 25 percent, while the national fatality trend increased 15 percent during the same period.

Lower Speed Limits:

The Administration is lowering the speed limit on nine streets, spanning more than 25 miles citywide, that are largely arterial roadways with heavy usage by pedestrians and cyclists.

Street locations and mileage are as follows:


– Flatbush Ave from Grand Army Plaza to Empire Boulevard.8 mile (30 MPH to 25 MPH)

– Shore Parkway Service Road from Bay 8th Street to Plumb 3rd Street, 4.8 miles (30 MPH to 25 MPH)

– Dahlgren Place from 86th Street to 92nd Street, .3 miles (30 MPH to 25 MPH)


– Riverside Drive from 165th Street to 181st Street, .8 mile (30 MPH to 25 MPH)


– Bruckner Blvd from East 135th Street to Pelham Bay Park, 6.5 miles (30 MPH to 25 MPH)

– Webster Ave from East 233 Street to East Gun Hill Road, 1.2 miles (30 MPH to 25 MPH)


– Rockaway Blvd from 150th Ave to 3rd Street (Nassau County border), 2.5 miles (40 MPH to 35 MPH)

– Northern Blvd from 114th Street to Glenwood Street (Nassau County border), 7 miles (30 MPH to 25 MPH)

Staten Island:

– Targee Street from West Fingerboard Rd to Broad St, 1.8 miles (30 MPH to 25 MPH)

Speed limits will go into effect as new speed-limit signage is posted over the next 4-6 weeks.  Speed cameras located on these streets will be reprogrammed and will have a 60-day adjustment period after new signage is posted.

Traffic Cameras

Over 950 speed cameras are now active Citywide, and DOT plans to install a total of 2,000 by the end of 2021. A New York State speed-camera law that was implemented last July increased the maximum number of school zones from 140 to 750, doubled speed camera hours to 6 AM until 10 PM year-round, and expanded cameras’ permitted distance to a quarter-mile radius from a school. Since July 2019, the City’s speed camera program has deterred speeding in school zones by nearly 70 percent.

The data gathered from DOT’s speed cameras enable the NYPD to focus its enforcement efforts in areas where most speed violations occur. Despite a spike in motor vehicle and motorcycle fatalities, traffic fatalities overall are down 6.9 percent in 2020.

Mayor de Blasio stated, “New York City’s children deserve safe, livable communities – and Vision Zero’s groundbreaking work will protect them in their streets. Slower speed limits, speed cameras, and increased enforcement will save lives and keep New York City the safest big city in America for the next generation.”

NYPD Chief of Transportation Nilda Hofmann stated, “The DOT’s speed-limit efforts and speed-camera program play a vital role in ensuring the safety of all who use our city streets, particularly some of our most vulnerable New Yorkers: schoolchildren, pedestrians and bicyclists. These cameras, combined with the everyday speed enforcement initiatives conducted by the NYPD’s Highway Patrol officers and precinct personnel serve to more effectively accomplish the goals of Vision Zero: Saving Lives.”

DOT Commissioner Polly Trottenberg, “Speeding is a leading cause of traffic fatalities. Even under COVID-19, this administration has maintained our commitment to keep our streets safe for the all users, especially the most vulnerable. We are reducing speed limits on some of the city’s most crash-prone corridors, and growing our speed camera program at a rate that will make our system the largest in the world.  With more cameras installed in 2020 than in the first six years of the program combined, DOT is continuously working to make our streets safer for everyone.”

By: Victoria Agosta (Victoria is the CityLaw intern and a New York Law School student, Class of 2022.)


3 thoughts on “Lower Speed Limits, Traffic Cameras in School Zones Aim to Reduce Traffic Deaths

  1. DeBozo is a joke. And this traffic camera initiative is another joke. All in an effort to extort hard earned money from drivers. Total fleecing.


    Issuing a ticket to me at 4 o’clock in the morning “is not about kids.”

    “No Flashing Yellow Lights” is *NOT* “about safeguarding our youth.”
    (There are faster ways to make a little $50, NYC, but none of them are printable.)
    Any nonattorney spokesperson can successfully beat this ticket.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.