Monday, December 17, 2012

Bad timing for important projects

From the Queens Chronicle:

The only direct route into Coleman Square, which bore the brunt of Hurricane Sandy’s storm surge in Old Howard Beach just six weeks ago, 159th Road has been impassable for the past few weeks because a National Grid project to move gas lines is causing the street to be torn up. The square sits in a low-lying swampy area adjacent to JFK Airport near the bed of Hawtree Creek, which meanders behind homes and stores between the street and the subway tracks. During Hurricane Sandy, the storm surge reached anywhere between 6 and 10 feet in the square, destroying every business there.

Now, as most merchants in the square attempt to return to some sense of normal, some are complaining that the construction work is hindering progress.

Further complicating the situation in the square are the repairs being done to hurricane-damaged buildings and the shuttle buses from Far Rockaway dropping off commuters at the subway while the A line to the Rockaways is out. The subway tracks in Broad Channel and over Jamaica Bay were destroyed in the hurricane and the MTA is running shuttle bus service from the Far Rockaway-Mott Avenue station around JFK Airport to Howard Beach.

The National Grid project should take a few weeks, but there is no timetable on when the DEP’s sewer replacement project will commence or be completed.

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