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City to Install Improved Signage in Queens Plaza, Queensboro Bridge Approaches

Approaching the Ed Koch Queensboro Bridge in Queens Plaza (Google Maps)

Jan. 27, 2018 By Nathaly Pesantez

The city is working to install upgraded signage in Queens Plaza and at the Manhattan-bound approaches to the Queensboro Bridge to help drivers better navigate the notoriously complicated area.

The Department of Transportation said it is taking steps to install additional navigation signs in the blocks surrounding Queens Plaza, and is moving existing signs to elevated columns and structures for greater visibility.

“We will be surveying the area within the next two weeks in preparation for the manufacturing and installation of signs,” a DOT spokesperson said.

The DOT said the project builds on past signage improvements at Queens Plaza, Northern Boulevard, Jackson Avenue, and Queens Boulevard implemented in 2015 at the request of the Long Island City Partnership.

But the LICP says the problems described three years ago still plague Queens Plaza in a second letter sent to the DOT just last week.

“We are deeply concerned that this complicated intersection has continued to be the site of vehicle-pedestrian, vehicle-cyclist, and vehicle-vehicle interactions,” wrote Elizabeth Lusskin, LICP president, to the DOT on Jan. 18.

“We hear regularly from local businesses and community stakeholders that their visitors have difficulty navigating this part of Long Island City,” she added.

The LICP president also questioned the agency on the signage proposed by the Department of City Planning in 2015 for the intersections, which fell in the hands of both the DOT and MTA for installation.

Department of City Planning sign renderings, proposed in 2015.

“It is our understanding that the NYC Department of Transportation was going to work with the Metropolitan Transit Authority to resolve any potential technical issues that would result from the size, weight, or location of the additional signage so that the signs could be installed,” Lusskin wrote.

The signage currently at the intersection sharply contrasts the renderings put forth by the DCP, and it is unclear if the DOT’s new signs will follow the 2015 suggestions.

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They should put in a big sign that says “SCANDALS =>” so it’s easier for me to get to Scandals when I’m drunk driving


Why they haven’t put cameras and “don’t block the box or you’ll get a ticket” signs is beyond me. Jackson/Northern Blvd is a major major thoroughfare and so much of the time, cars and trucks block it almost completely, forcing traffic to head into the oncoming lane with no visibility. Part of the time, there are traffic cops to prevent it, but otherwise, it’s a freeforall, with most drivers knowing that they can do whatever they want.

Safety Last

Even when traffic cops are there, the box still gets blocked. We need actual cops here 24/7 for a few weeks doing nothing but pulling over and ticketing all of these drivers and sending a message. This is a neighborhood now, not the derelict abyss it was years ago. This is also a huge public safety issue considering the sparse amount of first responders in LIC.


I cross this road near daily to get to work and I have lost count the number of times I have almost been run over by cars who seem to think the entrance and exit to the bridge is like a race track… that combined with limited visibility due to all the structure of the subway station over head make for a disaster waiting to happen.
In an ideal world the whole sorry mess would be bulldozed and re-designed. The area would look so much better if the subway was underground at this point instead (with linkage to Queens Plaza… it is still insane you cannot transfer to the EMR at Queens Plaza from the NW7 at Queensboro Plz if you are coming from Astoria for example). The entire above ground road junction would then be free to be designed in a much more user friendly way to all and would look considerably more aesthetically pleasing than the current blot on the landscape that isn’t even accessible if you are disabled, have a pram, can’t walk well etc etc. But this would cost millions which the MTA doesn’t have so I guess we will have to make do with some signs and continue to see accidents.


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