MAKING UWS MORE SENIOR FRIENDLY

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By Alice Robb

The Upper West Side has been selected for a pilot program designed to make New York a more pleasant place for seniors.

The new program involves installing benches on sidewalks, working with stores and salons to institute more senior discounts, and working with schools and colleges to make more courses available to seniors, the New York Times reported.

The intersection of Broadway and West 72nd Street, which was called a dangerous spot after seeing two car accidents on the same day in June, is among the 400 junctions where pedestrians now have extra time to cross the street.

In the case of the West 72nd Street intersection, the traffic signals will allow 29 seconds instead of 25, giving slower-moving seniors more time to cross.

Batya Lewton, vice president of Coalition for a Livable West Side, is looking forward to the improvements.

“Crossing the streets is very, very difficult on the West Side,” she said.

The New York Academy of Medicine has been working with the City Council since 2007 to make the city more accommodating of its growing senior citizen population.

Council Member Gale Brewer, who sits on the Aging Committee, wants the changes made on the Upper West Side to be a model for the rest of the city.

“The recommendations are doable and not very expensive,” Brewer said.

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