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Queens Chronicle

Bill would restore Queensboro name

Councilman Vallone pushes to drop Koch name from bridge to LIC

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Posted: Thursday, July 18, 2013 10:30 am | Updated: 10:18 am, Thu Jul 25, 2013.

One councilman wants the Queensboro name to speak for itself.

Councilman and borough president candidate Peter Vallone Jr. (D-Astoria) plans to propose legislation to drop the late mayor from the Ed Koch Queensboro Bridge name in the next 45 days.

The bill would also rename the Manhattan Municipal Building, located at 1 Centre St. in Manhattan, as the Ed Koch Manhattan Municipal Building. Vallone proposed the compromise in December 2010 when the city tacked the mayor’s name to the front of the Queensboro Bridge.

Vallone, one of 12 Council members who voted against the change, has called the renaming a campaign ploy citing Koch’s mayoral endorsement of Council speaker Christine Quinn (D-Manhattan), who pushed for the change shortly after.

“A landmark so closely linked to the history of our borough should never be renamed after anyone,” Vallone said. “The people of Queens have spoken, and they want their bridge back. Manhattan had no right to take the Queensboro Bridge away in the first place — I am just trying to correct this injustice.”

When the change happened politicians cited polls that showed many residents didn’t like the change; however, a quick survey at Queensboro Plaza on Tuesday afternoon showed ambivalence or a backing of the Koch name.

“I don’t really care, but Ed Koch was a good guy,” one Queens resident said, adding he usually calls the bridge the 59th Street Bridge or the Queensboro.

Another man said in Spanish it didn’t matter to him.

Two women at Queensbridge Houses, while eating lunch, said in Spanish they liked the former mayor while their third friend said she didn’t care either way.

In the past the borough president candidate said he would work to restore the Queensboro name if elected.

Currently no other Council member is working with Vallone on the legislation.

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