Sunday, July 18, 2010
Crowley & Vallone still angry at Amtrak
From the Queens Chronicle:
Local, state and now federal officials have joined the fight to save the once-green area along the Amtrak tracks in Woodside.
Congressman Joe Crowley (D-Queens, Bronx), along with Councilman Peter Vallone Jr. (D-Astoria) toured the Boulevard Gardens area along 56th Place between 28th and 30th Avenues this past Friday to see the extent to which Amtrak had cleaned up after cutting down trees without notice this May.
The government owned company cut a lot of the trees surrounding the tracks using part of the $30 million from a federal stimulus package and continues to cut across the Northeast to clear “Amtrak’s right of way,— as described by Amtrak spokesman Cliff Cole.
“It doesn’t excuse using stimulus money to destroy, and now they are using some taxpayers’ money to fix what they destroyed,” Vallone said.
Amtrak said its intent is not to save money in the future by preventing track damage from falling trees but to keep customers safe.
The chopping occurred without any environmental review or survey by Amtrak.
From the Times Ledger:
Crowley emphasized that the safety elements of the project were important, but said the project was done recklessly.
“They didn’t communicate with our office and that’s unacceptable,” Crowley said.
Resident Lorie Bacchieri, 54, said she thought more trees were taken down than needed.
“We understand along the tracks, but the tracks are up there,” she said, referring to the fact that many trees down below the top of the hill where the track runs had been removed. “They’re not going to fall up along the tracks.”
I love that hat and those shorts...