For anyone who hates being stuck behind a slow walker in NYC — who are we kidding, that’s all of us — the phenomenon may soon become a thing of the past.
The city announced today that it will begin implementing a “walking speed minimum” trial program across sidewalks and crosswalks in tourist-heavy areas of NYC, to go into effect July 1, 2022.
The walking speed in cities averages 3.1 miles per hour according to urban planners, but in NYC it reaches much closer to 4.5mph, a rate that pedestrians will be required to maintain from now on. Hyper-sensitive speedometers will be set up on sidewalks and will flash walkers’ current numerical speeds to ensure they are matching the rest of walking traffic.
The NYC Department of Transportation shared that you can be ticketed for not walking fast enough, called a “Slow Poke” citation. There can also be tickets given for anything that delays the flow of traffic, with the most severe penalty being for fully stopping in the middle of the sidewalk to take a photo, or standing aimlessly in front of a subway entrance.
Of course, exceptions will be made for the elderly and others who can’t maintain the speed for health reasons, with separate lanes being implemented on select sidewalks across the boroughs for safety and inclusivity.
Yeah, sorry, none of that is happening…as much as we sometimes wish it was!