Hamilton Beach is a unqiue neighborhood. The small hamlet nestled in between Hawtree Basin and the A subway line adjacent to JFK Airport is only accessible by car via a single, narrow two-way road.
But many of the over 1,000 residents of Hamilton Beach drive and all of them are forced to access the one road, which is anything but a straight run. Traveling to Hamilton Beach requires taking 102nd Street from just south of Coleman Square over a small bridge that spans Hawtree Creek, before veering left onto Russell Street and right again onto 103rd Street, the only north-south route in the neighborhood. From the main road, the community’s narrow residential blocks, many of which are dead ends, branch off.
The roads were built for a neighborhood much less densely populated than today’s Hamilton Beach. As the neighborhood grew, so did the amount of traffic utilizing the one route, and with it the dangers. The Q11 bus also runs along the route.
“The residents of Hamilton Beach are extremely concerned and frustrated with the condition of our roadways. Most cars and buses are often forced to drive on the wrong side of the street [to get around other cars], which is an accident waiting to happen,” said Roger Gendron, president of the Hamilton Beach Civic Association.
Gendron and Assemblyman Phil Goldfeder (D-Far Rockaway) are calling on the city Department of Transportation to conduct a traffic study and explore traffic control options. Goldfeder said during a recent “mobile office” visit to Hamilton Beach during hours, that he has personally witnessed near-accidents along the route.
“The current roadways in Hamilton Beach are unacceptable and preventive steps need to be taken immediately,” he said.
The DOT did not respond to requests for comment.