To The Editor (Queens Gazette):
The installation of a major 225,000 square-foot Federal Express trucking facility on land located in Western Astoria flies in the face of all logic. Riding on the reputation of a 2006 blackout and a proposed 18 percent rate increase, we now see Con Edison at its very worst when it refuses to sell the land that the facility would occupy to, perhaps, the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation.
The Coalition for a Better Astoria, a diverse group that represents a broad cross-section of Astoria and Long Island City residents and business owners, of which I am a proud member, prefers to have a choice whether we want the constant rumbling congestion of hundreds of pollution-spewing 18-wheeled tractor trailer trucks, rather than a lush, green area of parkland.
What makes the current plan so offensive is that the addition of a massive FedEx trucking facility in Western Queens would further exacerbate the environmental conditions of neighborhoods that already contain approximately 80 percent of the city's power plants, where jets land and take off from nearby LaGuardia Airport, and where its inhabitants suffer from the highest asthma and respiratory illness rates of the entire city.
Con Edison must do the right thing by not transferring the property to the current developer, Steel Equities, until such time the developer finds a more responsible use of the property that will consider a green approach while helping to relieve the already traffic-choked streets of Astoria and Long Island City.
Francis J. Balducci
Coalition for a Better Astoria