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No Love for One-Way Proposal in Jackson Heights

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Congestion in Jackson Heights: The DOT needs some new ideas

The Queens Times-Ledger reports on the "cool reception" given last week by Queens Community Board 3 and City Council Member Hiram Monserrate to the DOT's proposal for a one-way pair of streets on 35th and 37th avenues. What's most disappointing about the debate so far is the DOT's insistence it can't come up with any other solutions to the chronic traffic congestion that plagues the heavily residential neighborhood.

Will Sweeney, a founding member of the Western Jackson Heights Alliance civic association, said one-way streets east and west would increase vehicle speeds and danger to pedestrians. He said the congestion was created not by east-west problems, but by backups on north-south streets. That is where the DOT should focus its efforts, he said.

"We do need a traffic engineering solution to the congestion and pedestrian safety problems in Jackson Heights. We don't need a dangerous raceway for through traffic," he said.

DOT Queens Borough Commissioner Maura McCarthy, who noted that no one spoke in favor of the plan, said there were not many options for the city to consider.

"We are not here to force anything down anybody's throat," she said, but then added "there are not a lot of other ideas."

You can find a PDF of the DOT's complete presentation here.

Photo: Sarah Goodyear 

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