The sites are mostly near schools and cultural institutions, where sharing the streets with pedestrians is especially prevalent.
“Aggressive driver. Aggressive pedestrian. Two crash test dummies,” is an example of a one of the haikus. A picture of a cash-test dummy accompanies the haiku, which is one of 12 artistic designs displayed with them.
Although not all the poems feature designs, all have a QR code, which takes smartphone users to a Web site featuring the poems.
“We’re putting poetry into motion with public art to make New York City’s streets even safer,” DOT Commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan said. “These signs compliment our engineering and education efforts to create a steady rhythm for safer streets.”
The DOT placed multiple eight-by-eight inch signs in locations likely to catch the eye of pedestrians, according to a statement.
“‘Curbside Haiku’ seeks to merge public art with public awareness,” artist Morse said, “to infuse a bit of beauty and joy into the public sphere with images while underscoring the realities of the message with poetry.”
A Cobble Hill resident who wished to withhold her name was on Court Street and Atlantic Avenue last week looking at the crash-test dummy haiku located there.
She said she was aware that the signs' purpose is to remind pedestrians to use caution.
“You know, nothing else is working, so it’s interesting that this is what they’re trying,” she said. “They’re definitely eye-catching.”
However, she said the DOT should focus its energy at reducing traffic at that intersection and the ones near Brooklyn Borough Hall.
“They’ve got to change the flow of traffic,” she said.
“Curbside Haiku” is funded through a state grant and installed through the DOT’s Urban Art program. It was launched through a collaboration between the DOT’s Safety Education division and its Urban Art Program.
For more information visit Safestreetsfund.org.