Community Board 5 Supports LIRR Revival

BY LUIS GRONDA
Staff Writer

A third Queens Community Board has come out in support of reviving the Rockaway Beach Long Island Rail Road line.

Community Board 5, which covers Maspeth, Middle Village, Glendale and Ridgewood, has joined Community Boards 10 and 14 in voicing their preference for bringing back the train line.

When asked why CB5 decided to side with the train advocates, District Manager Gary Giordano said the most viable option to improve public transit in Queens is to revive the train line that ran from the Rockaways to Rego Park.

He said there is way too much car traffic on Woodhaven Boulevard and bringing back that train could alleviate that busy thoroughfare.

“We’re just too congested as far as the roadways go,” he said.

Reviving the LIRR line has drawn criticism from bike advocates in the past. They have said that line would be too expensive to reactivate and would bring noise and parking problems to the neighborhoods it is adjacent to.

Giordano said the board and its transportation committee have determined that improving the Borough’s public transportation takes precedent over converting that space into a pedestrian/bike path.

Among the notables that have expressed their opinion on this on-going issue include Assemblyman Phil Goldfeder (D-Ozone Park), who has championed the train line since he took office.

Advocates for the QueensWay include The Trust for Public Land, a nonprofit organization that advocates for green space, The Friends of The QueensWay and Councilwoman Karen Koslowitz (D-Forest Hills).

There is currently a feasibility study for both projects, one organized by the TPL and the other by Goldfeder and Queens College.

Reach Luis Gronda at (718) 357-7400, Ext. 127, lgronda@queenstribune.com or @luisgronda.