Araya Rasdjarmrearnsook and “In Practice: Under Foundations,” thru March 30, SculptureCenter, 44-19 Purves St., Long Island City. Info: (718) 361-1750.
“Cuomo announces LaGuardia AirTrain” (by Christopher Barca, Jan. 22, multiple editions) is overly optimistic concerning building a train to the plane for LaGuardia Airport.
Success for this project is dependent upon the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey and Metropolitan Transportation Authority working well together. Fourteen years after 9/11, the Cortland Street-World Trade Center No. 1 IRT subway station is still several years away from being back in service. The PANYNJ and MTA fought for years over budget, funding sources, scope and schedule. The MTA has yet to award a contract for construction to proceed.
To build a train to the plane from the Mets-Willets No. 7 subway and LIRR stations to LaGuardia Airport within five years for $450 million is a planners’ dream. In reality it will be a nightmare for both taxpayers and riders. You can count on cost overruns in the hundreds of millions and multiyear delays in construction before reaching beneficial use.
I would like to praise our New York City sanitation workers under their new Commissioner Kathryn Garcia, who did what they had to do during the blizzard of 2015. I also would like to give credit to Mayor de Blasio, who prepared the city for what could have been a complete disaster. The travel bans also helped tremendously, so the Transportation and Sanitation departments could get their job done.
I live in Glen Oaks Village and saw many Sanitation snow removal trucks doing their job on Commonwealth Boulevard. As I was shoveling I gave a wave to these men and women who worked hard to clear our streets so the many could get to work and to school. To them I say, kudos, for a job well done!
On her 387th day in office, Queens Borough President Melinda Katz delivered her first State of the Borough speech, listing accomplishments that she spoke of with pride, and future goals that she addressed with a mixture of hope and determination.
“Our motto at Borough Hall is simply this,” Katz told a capacity crowd at the Colden Center at Queens College. “If it’s good for our families, it’s good for Queens.”
Commuters will be digging a little deeper into their pockets on March 22, when fare and toll increases approved by the Metropolitan Transportation Authority take effect.
Under the changes adopted by the MTA board on Jan. 22, the base fare for a bus or subway ride will increase from $2.50 to $2.75. The bonus for those purchasing multiple rides with a MetroCard will rise to 11 percent for those paying $5.50 or more at a time.
Old Man Winter's wrath will be unleashed on Queens and the rest of the New York City metropolitan area tonight and Tuesday.
A blizzard warning is in effect the five boroughs, Long Island, Connecticut and most of New Jersey ahead of a potentially historic Nor'easter that could drop up to 30 inches of snow on the area through Tuesday night.
The Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) Board today approved increasing fares and tolls by 4% over the next two years, fulfilling a promise to keep fare and toll increases as low as possible. The new fares and tolls will take effect March 22, and will ensure the MTA can continue providing quality service even as ridership continues to climb.
“Art in the Garden—Paul Lin: Botanical Therapeutic Art,” Queens Botanical Garden, 43-50 Main St., Flushing. Info: (718) 886-3800, queensbotanical.org.
Community Board 5 didn’t support a rail tunnel underneath New York Harbor when it was first proposed a decade ago, and it sure isn’t going to support it now.
The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey has proposed five waterborne and five rail alternatives to the current system of moving 90 percent of the New York City metropolitan area’s freight by truck, something officials say is no longer efficient.
Want to travel, but don’t want to leave your pets behind?
You won’t have to now that a real estate company has leased space at John F. Kennedy International Airport for the transportation of animals ranging from household dogs and cats, horses, livestock and birds.
Following in the footsteps of the late Martin Luther King Jr., nearly a thousand attended a rally and march last Thursday to send a message to airlines, subcontracting companies and the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey to allow 12,000 subcontracted service workers to unionize, earn a living wage and have benefits.
The event was spearheaded by officials from Service Employees International Union Local 32BJ, the nation’s largest property service union. Protestors, many of whom were shuttled from 32BJ’s Manhattan headquarters by bus, assembled on a lawn adjacent to the National Car Rental station on Ditmars Boulevard, not far from LaGuardia Airport’s Central Terminal.
Community Board 3 residents can now know the purpose of peculiar green sidewalk markings that have appeared in the last year.
At CB 3’s January meeting last Thursday at IS 227 in East Elmhurst, Mikelle Adgate, from the city Department of Environmental Protection, spoke about the upcoming construction of 11 bioswales, a planter-like infrastructures designed, built and maintained to absorb excess rainwater.
The de Blasio administration last week was calling Vision Zero a success in its first year, calling 2014 the safest year for pedestrians in New York City history.
And the mayor and Department of Transportation Commissioner Polly Trottenberg said Queens Boulevard will now come under study in the coming months for safety improvements of its own.
The effort to connect Flushing and Jamaica via bus rapid transit is starting to draw criticism from elected officials who believe it would have a negative impact on their constituents.
But the Metropolitan Transportation Authority is saying those officials are by far in the minority on the matter, and supporters think a new bus route could cut commute times by 20 percent between Northern and southern Queens.
A third-world facility, no more.
In a move that would surely please Vice President Joe Biden, who compared LaGuardia Airport to a third-world country last year, a new AirTrain may be shuttling commuters back and forth between the airport and an area near Citi Field by the end of the decade.
Port Authority of New York and New Jersey representatives Mark Hoffer, left, and Ian Van Praagh discuss waterborne and rail alternatives to transporting freight throughout the city at a meeting of the Borough Board on Monday.
Re “Hwy. agencies may review ramp plans,” Jan. 8, multiple editions:
There are four major arteries that service the Willets Point and downtown Flushing areas. They are the Grand Central Parkway, Van Wyck Expressway, Northern Boulevard and Roosevelt Avenue, and they have been described as among the most vehicular-congested in New York City.
It does not require a degree in roadway engineering, just a simple drive along those arteries, to note it would be impossible to enlarge those roadways, in any significant manner. They are what they are and will remain so. It does not require deep thought to understand the development of the original Willets Point plan, now enlarged to include the so-called Willets West that would include a 1.4 million-square-foot mega shopping mall, will generate an enormous increase in vehicular traffic in the area that already services airports, and professional baseball and tennis stadiums.
While so-called ramps to and from the Van Wyck Expressway would enable vehicles to have access to and from the area, ramps will not and cannot solve the basic problem, to wit: the Van Wyck Expressway as well as the other arteries described above, are unable to handle a significant increase in traffic. Of what value can there be to a ramp that leads to an impossible congested roadway? In short, ramps would be akin to the infamous bridge to nowhere.
The above was made known to the New York City Council, whose members for many years have viewed their true constituency as the large real estate interests and not the little people in this city or small businesses, and predictably ignored the above and, almost unanimously, approved through the back door the Willets West mega mall plan.
It appears the state Department of Transportation and Federal Highway Administration will now take a second look at the proposed Van Wyck Expressway ramp plan as indeed they should. The people of this city expect a second-look decision to be based upon the merits, not politics and meddling from large real estate interests and a full discussion about how ramps will solve the Van Wyck Expressway’s inability] to handle a significant increase in traffic.
Finally, our current Mayor Bill de Blasio who ran on a claim to pay attention to the needs of the little people, and small businesses should step forward, review the entire plan with its enormous traffic consequences and take a position on the issue. He should also keep in mind the key to the city’s treasury was given to the billionaire real estate developers of Willets Point and Willets West, involving an amount so great it would cause the infamous Boss Tweed to tip his hat in admiration — and the fact the promised Willets Point affordable housing will not take place until 2025, if at all.
U.S. Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-New York) on Tuesday urged the Department of the Interior to designate $10 million from its fiscal year 2016 budget to benefit and refurbish critical areas of New York’s Gateway National Recreation Area, which includes the Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge, Riis Beach, Fort Tilden, Floyd Bennett Field and Canarise Pier.
“Gateway National Recreation Area provides unique, urban park and beach space to countless New Yorkers and visitors, and these transformative projects will make it an even better and more resilient urban park,” Schumer said in a prepared statement.
“Let’s hear it for public schools!” city Councilman Danny Dromm (D-Jackson Heights) said before a passionate crowd last Thursday evening.
Dromm, chairman of the Council’s Education Committee and a former teacher of 25 years, was among fellow electeds, parents, school administrators and other advocates at the State of Our Schools Town Hall, which took place in the auditorium of PS 69 in Jackson Heights.
If you think thoroughfares like the Long Island or Van Wyck expressways have too many trucks and tractor trailers on them now, the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey says just wait until 2035.
In a Monday presentation to Borough President Melinda Katz and the Borough Board, Director of New Port Initiatives Mark Hoffer said the present day model of trucking domestic freight in and out of the city is already nearly infeasible, and will become even more so in 20 years.
The family of 3-year-old Allison Liao, who was mowed down by a motorist in 2013, is waiting to find out if the driver’s license will be suspended or revoked.
A Department of Motor Vehichles hearing was held on Tuesday to determine if Ahmad Abu-Zayedeha, 44, of Flushing would retain his driver’s license. Two summonses for $150 each were previously voided by the DMV.
The state Department of Transportation and Federal Highway Administration are taking a second look at the Van Wyck Expressway ramp proposal for Willets Point and may decide to re-evaluate the plan in light of the mega mall project in the Citi Field parking lot.
That’s the word from Willets Point United, the group of business and land owners in the Iron Triangle area who are trying to stop the city and developers from proceeding with plans to redevelop the site. WPU members were able to obtain emails through FOIL, the Freedom of Information Law, on the state and federal levels, on the possible re-evaluation.
Three years ago, the idea of Malcolm Smith and Vincent Tabone being linked in any sort of context might have elicited laughs in Queens political circles.
But with the beginning of jury selection this past Monday in their federal corruption trial, the two stand accused of conspiring to bribe Republican Party officials in New York City so Smith, once one of the most powerful Democrats in the state, could run for mayor in 2013 as a Republican.
When I heard of the passing of Mario Cuomo last week, I was immediately transported back to a day in January — the 17th, I believe — of 1986, when my path briefly intersected with that of the governor, then entering his fourth year as head of our state.
Meeting anyone in that position would have been an honor, but the fact that he was a native of Queens — one of us — made the encounter all the more meaningful, as did the circumstances under which the introduction took place.
A permit was filed Tuesday, Dec. 30, to the city Department of Buildings for a mixed-use, 15-story residential building on Jackson Avenue in Long Island City. The permit was one of many submitted throughout the city at the end of 2014.
The building, to be constructed at 27-01 Jackson Ave., is in close proximity to the E, R, M, G and 7 subway lines — the latter of which has suffered overcrowded commutes during rush hour, in recent reports. No affordable housing units are designated.