Tag Archives: Utopia Parkway

61-year-old man fatally struck in Flushing hit-and-run

| ctumola@queenscourier.com


A 61-year-old man was killed in a hit-and-run Wednesday night as he was crossing the street in Flushing, police said.

The victim was walking across 46th Avenue near Utopia Parkway at about 11:40 p.m. when the driver struck the man and then fled, authorities said.

The pedestrian, who was not identified by police, was taken to Flushing Hospital Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead.

Police currently do not have a vehicle description.

Anyone with information is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 800-577-TIPS (8477). The public can also submit their tips by logging onto the Crime Stoppers website or can text their tips to CRIMES (274637), then enter TIP577. All calls are strictly confidential.


Fresh Meadows residents and local pol tell city flooding must stop

| ejankiewicz@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy of Jim Gallagher

Fresh Meadows residents have reached their saturation point.

For over a decade, a section of Utopia Parkway has been getting flooded every time it rains more than a few inches, and homes along the street end up with basements, bathrooms and garages overflowing with untreated sewage, according to residents and City Councilman Rory Lancman.

“This is something that’s been going on for many years,”  Lancman said, before going on to describe the issue as both “maddening” and “intolerable.”

The Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) conducted a study of the area and came up with several possible solutions, from raising the curb to installing green infrastructure like bioswales, which are plantings and landscape designs to filter and redirect polluted water.

The long-standing problem, according to residents and city documents, is geography. The area sits in a valley that naturally collects water, overwhelming the catch basins faster than in other areas.

“So it’s not as if the city can’t do anything to alleviate the problem,” Lancman said. “We can’t get the DEP to ultimately tell us what it’s willing to do.”

The councilman is meeting with the DEP next week to see if he can push the department to move ahead with a solution.

In the meantime, residents like Annette Shapiro who live in the problem area between 65th and 67th Avenue worry at the mere prospect of a heavy rainfall.

“Every time it rains, everybody freaks out,” she said. “It’s no way to live. I’m sick of it.”


Oakland Gardens teen IDed as LIE crash victim

By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com

Photo by Vic Nicastro

Updated 4:35 p.m. 

Two people, including a Queens high school student, were killed after their vehicle hit a tree off of the Long Island Expressway Tuesday.

Jennifer Gao, 16, of Oakland Gardens lost her life in the crash. Police identified the driver, who also died in the accident, as 19-year-old Jiahao Liang of Middletown, N.Y.

Teary-eyed family members declined to comment on Gao or the accident.

The accident happened just before 1 .a.m. Tuesday near Utopia Parkway and Kissena Boulevard, between exits 24 and 25, cops said.

An Audi sedan was driving westbound down the expressway when the car went off the roadway, turned on its side and crashed into a tree, police said.

The driver and Gao were pronounced dead at the scene, according to the NYPD.

A preliminary investigation found that speed was likely a factor in the accident, police said.



Suspects captured in Kissena Park chase charged with robbery, fake gun possession

| ctumola@queenscourier.com

Photos courtesy of NYPD

Two robbery suspects who led police on a high-speed chase through Queens have been charged with robbery, criminal use of a firearm and possession of an imitation pistol, according to the district attorney.

One of the defendants, Ravinder Dharamshot, 32, of Queens Village, has additionally been charged with reckless endangerment.

Dharamshot and his accomplice, 23-year-old Umair Farooq of Oakland Gardens, are accused of robbing several gas stations and a deli in the borough last month.

Around 5:15 a.m. on Wednesday, April 3, a police officer spotted a minivan that matched the description of the vehicle used in those robberies near Utopia Parkway and Cross Island Parkway and gave chase, according to the DA.

Dharamshot, who was driving the vehicle, allegedly started speeding dangerously, during which time he headed the wrong way down the Clearview Expressway and drove onto the sidewalk, nearly hitting pedestrians.

After striking a police car at Colden Street and Elder Avenue, injuring two officers, Dharamshot fled the minivan.
Farooq was apprehended shortly after the crash.

Following a manhunt through Kissena Park and the surrounding streets, police found Dharamshot in a parked car in Queens Village later that day.

The pair faces up to 25 years in prison if convicted.



Red Chop is tops

| vschneps@queenscourier.com

VICKI 413w

On busy Utopia Parkway near the pretty Clearview Gardens in Whitestone, a newly-designed gem of a restaurant has opened, Red Chop. It offers authentic Sichuan cooking and a sushi bar under the renowned leadership of famous Sichuan cook, chef Shen.

Arriving in Queens with 40 years of experience as a Sichuan cook, chef Shen was born in Chengdu, the capital of the Sichuan province in southwest China. A city of 3.5 million people, it offers endless dining experiences. It’s home to the spicy Chinese cooking that the region is famous for. The secret to great Sichuan cooking is the subtlety of the spices, the blending to achieve a variety of tastes. After dining there I can tell you they are serving deliciously tasty food — hot and spicy, adapted to your taste buds.

Chef Shen comes from a family of chefs and was trained by his father’s side since he was 18. After establishing his own reputation at fine hotels in China he came to America in the late 1990s, working at the finest Manhattan restaurants. Now he is co-owner of Red Chop, and are you in for a treat.

We began our meal with a selection from the soup menu. Although Red Chop offers the usual hot & sour soup and wonton or egg drop soup for $7, we shared a crab meat and asparagus soup that was in an egg drop broth with chunks of the fish. Delicious!

Then we ordered one of chef Shen’s unique dishes, a hand-rolled eggplant enhanced by a delicate Sichuan garlic sauce. It’s not to be missed. Every dish can be prepared to your liking, from mild spicy to very spicy. We went with medium spicy and enjoyed every bite from the plentiful portions.

Another entree, this time from the poultry choices, was a diced chicken with baby shrimp in a Peking sauce. It was perfectly prepared, juicy and fall-off-the-fork tender. From the seafood choices we ate the sauteed flounder with mixed vegetables, also a good choice.

Red Chop has a sushi chef preparing lunch specials and at dinner we had multiple selections from the Red Chop special sushi offering tuna, salmon and yellowtail — an impressive platter that could have been our whole meal.

We had to try the unique dessert choices, fried ice cream, Japanese style fried bananas and an outrageous and not-to-be-missed banana split!

Red Chop boasts multiple lunch specials Monday to Friday served with white or vegetable fried rice and a choice of spring roll, soup or soda, all for the small sum of $6.50. They even deliver, so having lunch here is cheaper than cooking at home and oh so delicious. And I must tell you, Wendy, the manager, is there to greet you and made us feel so welcome I can’t wait to return. Try it, you will love it!


Red Chop

20-02 Utopia Parkway




Hours: Monday through Thursday, 11:30 a.m. to 10:30 p.m.; Friday, 11:30 a.m. to 11:30 p.m.; Saturday, 12:30 to 11:30 p.m.; Sunday, 1 to 10:30 p.m.

Major credit cards accepted

Wheelchair accessible

Red Chop on Urbanspoon