Saturday, September 8, 2012
1980s pedestrian plaza has seen better days
From the Queens Chronicle:
...in the late 1980s, the elevated tracks over Jamaica Avenue were torn down east of Richmond Hill and the E train was extended to Jamaica Center, passing directly below the intersection. A new station was built along the E line, this time underground, and the DOT restructured the roads to make the intersection safer and help traffic flow better.
The end result was a triangle-shaped plaza, two blocks north of Jamaica Hospital, bordered by the Van Wyck Expressway service road, Jamaica Avenue and Metropolitan Avenue. In the center of the plaza is a kiosk that serves as an entrance to the Jamaica-Van Wyck subway station, which opened on Dec. 11, 1988.
When the plaza was built in the late 1980s, future-Queens Parks Commissioner Richard Murphy told Community Board 9 that he wanted to have it added to his agency’s jurisdiction.
But that never happened, and today no one is sure which agency is responsible for the plaza and CB 9 District Manager Mary Ann Carey wants someone to take on its maintenance.
“The park is a mess,” Carey said. “And we have no idea whose responsibility it is.”
A flagpole on the site is littered with sticker ads and blue graffiti scars the concrete barriers that separate the sitting area from green spaces, and much of the latter is overgrown with unkempt shrubbery. Litter, everything from old newspapers to empty potato chip bags, is scattered on the ground around the benches.
They forgot to mention the bums and piss stench.