Nov. 15, 2016 By Christian Murray
The Department of Transportation’s plan to redesign and reconstruct the roadways around the Hunters Point district will bring significant changes to Vernon Blvd between 50th Avenue and Borden Avenue.
The plan, which was approved by Community Board 2 earlier this month, will lead to the loss of 85 parking spaces on Vernon Blvd between 50th and Borden Avenues. Some of these lost spaces will be offset by the addition of 36 spots on a new parking lane on Borden Avenue and dozens of others in the greater neighborhood.
The DOT claims that when the street reconstruction is complete—which will incorporate the area of 44th Drive to Borden Avenue and Jackson Avenue to 5th Street—there will be a modest increase in the net number of parking spaces.
The mayor dedicated $29.6 million out the city’s $115 million Vision Zero for the first phase of the reconstruction. The first phase covers the cost of the redesign and a significant portion of the roadway reconstruction and new drainage system within.
The plan, which is extremely comprehensive, will bring sidewalk extensions, roadway medians, greenery, additional pedestrian crossings and bicycle lanes. However, the most visible change will take place near where Vernon Blvd/Jackson Avenue and Borden Avenue all meet.
The DOT plans to significantly expand the sidewalk by Old Hickory Park on Jackson Avenue all the way to Borden Avenue. The DOT would add some greenery and possible public art to the space.
Meanwhile, Vernon Mall, located between 51st and 50th Avenue, will lose the green space in the middle of the street where the benches are located and where the Christmas tree often goes up. The DOT would significantly extend the sidewalk on the east side of Vernon-between 50th and 51st Avenues–that would include public space.
The idea, according to the DOT, is to “improve traffic flow” along Vernon Boulevard and reduce congestion.
“We tried to keep as much parking as possible,” said Denise Keehan-Smith, chairwoman of Community Board 2 and the head of the board’s Transportation Committee. “We have gone over and over the plan for some time in order to do so. In the end, the changes will help reduce accidents based on the data DOT provided us with.”
The redesign will also bring significant changes to the roadways approaching the Pulaski Bridge (see DOT document below).
The plan will see an increase of parking spaces in some sections of Hunters Point. There will be 48 new spots on the south side of 48th Avenue between Vernon and Center Blvds.
The projected start date for the street redesign is likely to be somewhere between 2018 and 2019. The DOT is waiting for the Dept. of Environmental Protection to complete its drainage plan before going ahead. Some streets may have to be ripped up by the DEP for pipes to be put down.
The plan might also be altered depending on what transpires with the BQX and the route it takes.
Hunters Point LIC Nov 2016 by Queens Post on Scribd
Great, looking forward to see the improved median and flow of traffic. Hopefully, it will be safer to walk across at that crosswalk. Also, hopefully will eliminate the drunk homeless that camp out there after released from the police station.
Hmm, which is the lesser evil- the police parking on the extended sidewalk or the drunks fighting and cursing? Maybe now the cops will do something about those fights. Just don’t put benches for the homeless drunks to hang out in that extended sidewalk.
I feel sorry for Cafe Henri and the people who live in the neighboring building on Vernon. The bums will be right outside their doors.
Big improvement and a worthwhile one imo. It will be more attractive as well as functional if they hold true to the plans. Now where Borden passes the lie by the tolls, that area is in desperate need of some traffic control as it’s currently a free for all. Hope there plans for that section can bring some control and safety to a messy intersection.
What’s the point? The cops will still park on the sidewalk. This plan is a waste of money and will do nothing to improve pedestrian accessibility.
Great. But omg where will the police park their personal cars!?!
You are so right. What’s the point….police park their cars all over the street/sidewalk.
I’m looking at that new very wide sidewalk outside Cafe Henri and guess that the cops’ cars will be parked there.
Oh my God the police park their cars all over while they protect your dumbass, oh the horror. Ungrateful asshats, that this is your only complaint.
Hey, Officer Phil. I’m wondering how you’d feel if we all parked our cars on the sidewalk outside your Nassau County home. It wouldn’t be nice, would it? We appreciate police protection, but wished the 108 were more considerate neighbors. Bye!
Actually while they’re rebuilding this area into a mini city they should consider building the 108 a new modern precinct as their current home, like many other precincts around the city, is old and outdated. Tie it into one of the many mega projects that are in the works and provide them with a modern and proper facility (including parking).
Sure thing, captain.
Nope, just would like to see our infrastructure and services modernized. However I do support the police and the military as well and believe they should have proper provisions all around.
Thanks for covering this and summarizing the changes!