Community Board 7 has been asking the city to replace a College Point road since 1987 and is wondering why it still has not been done after construction crews began the job several years ago.
Linden Place, which connects College Point to Flushing under the Whitestone Expressway, once ran all the way north to 23rd Avenue and provided an extra route for traffic to get into the neighborhood.
But about 30 years ago, the portion of the road between 23rd and 28th avenues was closed due to constant flooding problems, according to College Point residents. Now civic groups want it both reopened and extended all the way north to 20th Avenue, another route in and out of the neighborhood, to help accommodate a development boom in the area and alleviate the already traffic-choked streets.
The NYPD is currently constructing a massive police academy nearby, and next year a trash transfer station is set to open in the neighborhood, meaning legions of garbage trucks will be traversing the streets.
“If you punch this out 20 years, it’s going to be a nightmare,” said Joe Femenia, former president of the College Point Civic Association and chairman of CB 7’s Transportation Committee.
The isolated neighborhood is cut off from the rest of Queens by the Whitestone Expressway, leaving only a handful of roads that cross the arterial highway. One of those roads is Linden Place.
After it was initially closed, CB 7 put its reconstruction on its budget in 1987. It sat there until 2007, when the city Economic Development Corp. put the project out to bid as part of the creation of the College Point Corporate Park.
The EDC first predicted the project would be completed in 2009, but instead it was actually started in that year.
The EDC’s website states, “Reconstruction of Linden Place began in spring of 2009, and is expected to be completed in fall 2011.”
But after initial work was done on the street, crews stopped working and the road has sat unfinished.
“Basically, we have been in limbo for two years,” Femenia said.
CB 7 is set to have an Oct. 18 meeting with EDC to determine the status of the project.
EDC deferred comment about the extension to the city Department of Transportation, which did not respond to a request for comment by press time.
Femenia has been sending letters trying to figure out why the project has been held up, since the reconstruction portion appears to be fully funded, but the civic leader has not received any concrete answers, he said.
Reach reporter Joe Anuta by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 718-260-4566.
©2012 Community News Group
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