BY LUIS GRONDA
The City has pledged a truckload of money to fund the redesign of a major thoroughfare commonly called “the boulevard of death.”
Mayor Bill de Blasio announced last week that $100 million will be dedicated specifically towards the redesign of Queens Boulevard. It is part of de Blasio’s Vision Zero plan to decrease pedestrian fatalities around the City.
The mayor announced the news before a City Council transportation committee hearing.
The money is part of a $250 million allocation for the “great streets” initiative that is funding safety redesigns for major streets in the City. In addition to Queens Boulevard, Atlantic and Fourth Avenues in Brooklyn and the Grand Concourse in the Bronx will also get a slice of that money. Part of the plan itself includes renovating curbs in those areas.
Frank Gulluscio, District Manager of Community Board 6, which includes part of Queens Boulevard, said he was delighted that the City is making the road a priority in terms of safety.
“We’re excited that the mayor has dedicated the resources to improve the safety of pedestrians, seniors and children,” he said.
The City Department of Transportation has begun holding public workshops on Queens Boulevard, hosting one in Sunnyside earlier this year.
“DOT continues to work on the plan and we aim to begin sharing the ideas of the redesign with the community and other local partners and stakeholders next month,” a spokesperson said in a statement.
The news came before a March 7 rally calling for improved safety on Queens Boulevard.
Transportation Alternatives hosted the march, which began at MacDonald Park in Forest Hills and walked down to the steps of Queens Borough Hall, where they held the rally.
Councilwoman Karen Koslowitz (D-Forest Hills) was among those in attendance at the rally, calling on DOT to expedite the project. She announced she has pledged $1 million to help start the Queens Boulevard initiative as well.
Reach Luis Gronda at (718) 357-7400, Ext. 127, firstname.lastname@example.org, or @luisgronda.