NEW ROCHELLE, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — Habitat for Humanity not only rebuilds neighborhoods, it’s trying to make them safer.
When he’s not swinging a hammer for Habitat for Humanity of Westchester, the group’s executive director Jim Killoran might be found outside his New Rochelle office with a radar gun in his hand.
The speed limit on Main Street is 30 mph, but he said they routinely clock drivers going 40 mph and 50 mph. That’s why Killoran and his staff are keeping speed statistics to present to the city council.
“People have gotten hit here, I’ve been here when people have gotten hit,” he told WCBS 880’s Sean Adams. “When you’re hit by a car going 40 miles an hour, you die. When you’re hit by a car going 30 miles an hour, you get seriously injured.”
Killoran said a car once nearly crashed into Habitat’s thrift store.
“It almost went through the window,” he said.
He has also posted blue and white signs in New Rochelle, Yonkers and Mount Vernon to remind drivers that people live in these neighborhoods, so slow down.
“Everyone is thinking about getting there, you’re not thinking about the people you’re passing,” he said. “So slow down for pedestrians, people live and work here.”
Killoran and others see success in a neighboring community.
“If you look at Mamaroneck, I say Mamaroneck got it right,” he said. “There’s a state law pedestrian sign every block.”
“When you go down Mamaroneck Avenue, as soon as people see pedestrians right there, cars stop no matter what,” said business owner Maryann Lajos.
Locals wave and give a thumbs up to the tall, friendly-faced man with the radar gun on Main Street, many applauding his efforts.
“It’s non-threatening,” Killoran said. “It’s just to help people think about, ‘oh yea, there are people here.'”
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