Sunny News for Sunnyside
Sometimes the squeaky wheel gets heard.
Sunnyside store owners won a major battle last week when the city Department of Transportation announced changes in parking rules that will make it easier for patrons to find a place to park close to their stores.
Transportation Commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan came to Queens Boulevard last week to announce the changes that will help put the sunny back in Sunnyside. By the end of October, the no-standing rules along the north side of Queens Boulevard between 39th and 49th streets will be changed from 7 a.m. to 10 a.m. to 7 a.m. to 8 a.m.
Perhaps more important, 60 parking spots under the No. 7 train will be changed from 12-hour to four-hour parking. This will make the spots useless for commuters who park under the tracks and take the train to work.
The change represents a reasonable compromise between the need to encourage workers heading to Manhattan to use public transportation and the need for store owners to keep their shops accessible to customers.
City Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer welcomed the news.
“Sunnyside is not just a place to park your car on your way to Manhattan,” he said.
This is in no way diminishes the importance of encouraging people to use public transportation on their way to and from work, but it was not fair to allow a community to become a commuter parking lot.
Shut ’em Down
Congratulations to the Queens district attorney’s office and the NYPD, which worked together to close down what is believed to be the largest identity theft ring in U.S. history — which was headquartered in Queens.
According to city officials, five independent theft rings with ties to four continents stole as much as $13 million through credit card fraud and robberies. Officials say that all but 25 of the suspects believed to be involved in the operation have been arrested after an investigation that lasted 16 months.
This was not a victimless crime. These crooks hurt people. In addition to recovering a large amount of cash and merchandise that was illegally obtained, the police also confiscated weapons.
Said Police Commissioner Ray Kelly, “They victimized thousands of Americans, including innocent New Yorkers.”
©2011 Community News Group
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