Tag Archives: Richmond Hil

CB 9 asks for tweaks to Woodhaven/Cross Bay Select Bus plan

By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photo by Angela Matua


During its final meeting before the summer break on Tuesday in Ozone Park, Community Board 9 pressed the MTA and the city Department of Transportation (DOT) to make changes to its Select Bus Service (SBS) plan for Woodhaven and Cross Bay boulevards.

Both the MTA and DOT previously selected a plan to create the bus rapid transit (BRT) system on the boulevard running between Elmhurst and the Rockaways. The new design would create designated bus lanes, left-turn bays at selected locations and slip lanes at select locations to allow vehicles to move between the service road and the main road.

“Our project goal, in addition to improving transit service, is to really think about this plan holistically and how do you transform Cross Bay and Woodhaven boulevards into streets where you can comfortably get on and off the bus,” said Taylor Gouge of the DOT.

The plan would eliminate left turns from Woodhaven Boulevard onto Jamaica Avenue and 101st Avenue in Woodhaven and Ozone Park, respectively. Left turns would be allowed at Park Lane South and 103rd Avenue, but at the meeting, Board 9 members and residents said those left turns were not enough.

“We did hear a lot of concerns about that at our community workshop, so the DOT is currently evaluating some other options that we have for that intersection,” Gouge added.

Board member Priscilla Levine requested that there be countdown clocks along the boulevards to make it safer and easier for those crossing the street to enter and exit buses.

Another workshop will be held on Wednesday, June 24 to discuss these concerns.


Three Queens elementary schools receive Blue Ribbon award

| mchan@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photo by Melissa Chan

The coveted federal Blue Ribbon award will go to three Queens elementary schools this year, U.S. education officials announced early this week.

P.S. 46 in Oakland Gardens, P.S. 66 in Richmond Hill and P.S. 221 in Little Neck earned their prestigious titles on September 24.

The honor is given to public and private schools that have demonstrated significant student achievement, education officials said. It is based on overall academic excellence or improvement.

“We’re pretty excited,” said Principal Marsha Goldberg of P.S. 46. “The students realize the impact as much as the adults do. This is their expectation. To them, it’s another day at school.”

Principal Patricia Bullard of P.S. 221 said her school’s award was achieved through “the hard work of our conscientious students, dedication of our talented staff and support of our parents.”

“I am extremely proud of our entire school community for achieving this national distinction,” she said in a statement. “P.S. 221 is truly a special place.”

Over in Richmond Hill, P.S. 66 was also beaming with pride.

“I’ve been in this community as a teacher since 1976,” said Principal Phyllis Leinwand. “On a personal level, I’m very proud, having been in this area for nearly four decades, that this amazing accolade is being shared by the south Queens community.”

The U.S. Department of Education named 286 schools in the country this year as Blue Ribbon institutions. Award recipients also include two schools in Brooklyn and one in Manhattan.

“Excellence in education matters and we should honor the schools that are leading the way to prepare students for success in college and careers,” said U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan.

“National Blue Ribbon schools represent examples of educational excellence, and their work reflects the belief that every child in America deserves a world-class education,” Duncan continued.

The Blue Ribbon honorees will be celebrated in November at an awards ceremony in Washington, D.C.



Roka rocks!

| lguerre@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photo by Liam La Guerre

Stepping inside Roka Turkish Cuisine feels like drifting across the Atlantic Ocean, far from bustling Metropolitan Avenue to the Mediterranean.

Co-owner Anet Dulger, who grew up in Istanbul, inherited her cooking style from her mother and sisters. She created a menu based on her upbringing and uses imported Turkish ingredients to draw out authentic tastes.

Dulger buys olive oil directly from Turkey and fish that is caught off the Atlantic coast in Europe. Despite the extra expense she believes “taste and quality are the most important thing.”

Vegetables are bought locally from farmers’ markets and chicken and lamb, the majority of meat on the menu, is purchased from farms in Pennsylvania that raise the animals naturally.

For starters the bread is made fresh from scratch. Light and soft, but with just the right amount of firmness, it complements Turkish olive oil nicely.

Roka offers customers a wide variety of starters from soups to salads and so much more.

Some appetizers on the menu include rich hummus, creamy lebni, savory baba ganoush, stuffed grape leaves and spicy Ezme Acili. Each has a distinctly different taste. But ordering a platter of multiple dips for $12 and mixing and matching each for different combinations creates a wildly delicious experience as each new combination explodes with a variety of flavors.

For entrées, meats and seafood are generally grilled and cost under $20. The chicken and lamb kebab are very savory, while the köfte or Turkish meatball, which is grilled lamb with parsley and onions, is smoky and tender.

Roka offers specialty drinks that include Turkish teas and Turk kaveshi, or Turkish coffee that go perfectly with traditional baklava. The dessert, which is a pastry made with honey and pistachio, is flaky and sweet.

If the scrumptious food isn’t enough to convince someone to try Roka, then maybe the health factor would.

Most of the food at Roka is loaded with spices that have various health benefits. Dulger uses lots of parsley, which is rich in vitamins, known to limit cancer and control blood pressure.

“If I don’t eat it, I don’t serve it,” Dulger said.

Roka Turkish Cuisine
116-35 Metropolitan Avenue, Richmond Hill
Hours- Tuesday- Sunday, noon. -11 p.m.
Wheelchair accessible: Yes