The Jogging Jeweler blog began in frustration with blaring horns, too many near misses while pushing my daughter in a jogging stroller, and with the determination to bring awareness to the greater communities of the Rivertowns.
I began running in the Rivertowns nearly four years ago when my family moved to Irvington, we were on Main St right next to the entrance of the Old Croton Aqueduct. When we purchased our home in Dobbs Ferry, the diversity of my runs expanded as did my frustration with the local infrastructure.
A simple request on Facebook to borrow a GoPro started this past year's journey. I wore the GoPro on a baseball cap while running. Recording my runs, the traffic, crosswalks, sidewalks, or the lack thereof.
What did we learn?Sidewalks - They are one sided or missing completely. They are jagged, uneven, crumbling, and unkempt. They can be narrowed by trees, utility poles, or intruding properties. Some lack entrance ramps for wheelchair or stroller access.
Sidewalk continues to crumble along Route 9 from Dobbs Ferry to Irvington.Crosswalks - Boy are we (s)lacking...
- Route 9 lacks them in key crossings to the OCA between Dobbs Ferry and Irvington.
- Dobbs Ferry's Cedar & Main Street is their business district, but completely lacks in safe crossings for shoppers and visitors.
- The OCA causes major pedestrian safety concerns as it passes across many village streets as well as through a Dobbs Ferry parking lot, 100% unmarked.
What can we do?
- Pay attention... your driving habits, set an example not just for the mini-me's in the backseat, but for other drivers too.
- STOP. LOOK. WAVE. A campaign to get drivers and pedestrians to acknowledge one another at crossings was just the first step.
- Join the local PTSA Safe Routes groups - look on Facebook for their posts.
- Volunteer to help the Route 9 Steering Committee.
- Join your village's Downtown Task Force.
- Clear your sidewalks of debris.
- Trim the trees on your property so pedestrians/drivers can see clearly.
Communicate.Yes...we can all complain on Facebook - but does that go anywhere? What can you say or write in real life that will make an impact?
- CALL the local PD to report consistent traffic issues (speeding, rolled stop signs, illegal turns, dangerous intersections, etc) you witness.
- Dobbs Ferry - Anonymous Tip Website, Send a text to 847411 with the subject DFPD, or call the non-emergency number - (914) 693-5500
- SPEAK about the condition or lack of local sidewalks at your village's BOT monthly meetings.
- WRITE about our lack of cross walks along Main Street to the Rivertowns Enterprise
- WRITE about Route 9 safety issues to Governor Cuomo
- WRITE about the increase in cyclists you have seen to Senator Cousins - firstname.lastname@example.org
- WRITE about the Old Croton Aqueduct needing more and better crosswalks to George Latimer
- WRITE about bump outs and turn lanes being needed on Route 9 to Paul Feiner - email@example.com
- WRITE about potholes, blind spots, or crumbling sidewalks to Mary Jane Shimski , - or - CALL her office- Staff member, Ellen Hendrick - 914-995-2806
- WRITE - a letter with neighbors, describe your hyper-local experience or issue, have everyone sign it and send it to all of the above listed public officials. Organized communication is appreciated.
The world evolves around us, no matter how hard we wish it to remain still and the same. Life moves and with that forward motion I will continue onward to new and always exciting things. This will be the final Jogging Jeweler blog for the Rivertowns. Thank you for your support and stay safe out there!