From the Times Ledger:
At the end of the N and Q lines, the merchants near 31st [Street] and Ditmars Boulevard say while the area sees a lot of traffic, few of the cars parked beneath the subway train belong to customers visiting their businesses.
“We’re terrorized by the livery cab drivers,” said Harry Panagiotopoulos, owner of the Igloo Café at 22-26 31st St.
Panagiotopoulos said livery cabs often park on the streets in front of the restaurants, taking up spots for hours at a time. This is just one of the problems Panagiotopoulos said plagues the merchants on the block, whom he said have faced blackouts and unfair competition from vendors who set up shop across the street from their businesses.
While he has discussed these problems with City Councilman Peter Vallone Jr. (D-Astoria) and state Sen. Michael Gianaris (D-Astoria), both of whom have offices near the intersection and have worked to get the issues resolved, little has changed long-term.