You've seen how rubberneckers slow down on highways when a car is off the road, right?
Get a couple of cars from the junkyard and park them a couple of houses away. That will slow things down.
All jokes aside, check with the city to find out exactly who to talk to. It seems to me that if you got people in your neighborhood to sign a petition and then took it to the powers that be - then something could begin to move in a positive direction.
I think you're really forward thinking and a good neighbor being concerned about children playing in the area.