BY ASSEMBLYMAN PHIL GOLDFEDER
I have long advocated for improving transportation for families across Queens as the best way to meet the demands of our growing population and boost economic activity in the borough. I have called for the reactivation of the Rockaway Beach Rail Line as the most cost-efficient way to improve commutes for tens of thousands of families and take cars off our clogged roadways.
Also, I recently met with Department of Transportation Queens Commissioner Nicole Garcia in Howard Beach, Lindenwood and Hamilton Beach to inspect roadways where our families have long asked for improvements.
That’s why I’m always willing to support the work done by the MTA, DOT or any other agency to improve infrastructure and make our commutes safer and more efficient.
However, with any large infrastructure project we need to take steps to ensure minimal impact to our homes and local businesses whenever possible.
Recently, I’ve been contacted by families and store owners along Liberty Avenue in Ozone Park that have been forced to deal with a traffic nightmare as a result of the ongoing Liberty Avenue Line Station Renewal Project, which is currently rebuilding A train stations between 80th Street and 111th Street.
For almost a year, NYC Transit has been storing construction equipment on Liberty Avenue and 84th Street. In one area, this equipment covers about 12 car lengths along the avenue. Not only do these materials take up valuable parking spaces, but they have also created a dangerous situation as cars swerve into oncoming traffic to pass. I’ve even spoken to local business owners who have had company vehicles hit by oncoming traffic. They come into work every day wondering if they and their employees will make it safely through the workday. This is unacceptable.
I’ve written to NYC Transit President Carmen Bianco urging the state agency to minimize the amount of equipment stored on this busy roadway. Our families and local businesses should expect some inconvenience as work progresses on the stations. But we should not accept any situation that hurts our local economy and puts our families’ lives at risk. By being smart about how we improve infrastructure in the community, we can ensure that our families stay safe and our local businesses remain strong.
Goldfeder represents the 23rd District encompassing Ozone Park, Howard Beach, Hamilton Beach, Lindenwood, Broad Channel and Rockaway.