Since the last century, LaGuardia Airport has been an embarrassment to Queens and the city. An airport constructed during the term of its namesake, Fiorella LaGuardia, one of our most progressive and beloved mayors, has become obsolete and a punchline.
When Vice President Joe Biden called LaGuardia a “third-world airport” last year, many called it a gaffe. We call it brutal honesty.
But LaGuardia is only a symptom of a larger problem, which is our crumbling infrastructure. Just take a look at our roads. Last week, our sister paper the Press of Southeast Queens published an article about the sad state of Jamaica Avenue. In South Queens, the aging power grid led to several power outages this summer. Last winter, the No. 7 train struggled to remain functional during the cold and snowy weather. NYCHA buildings are left crumbling, our bridges and overpasses are deficient, our schools cannot keep up with the growing student population and our water mains are constantly breaking.
That doesn’t take away from the welcomed news regarding LaGuardia. When this project is done, New York will have a 21st Century airport to be proud of. But we need to have roads, power grids, transit and schools we can be proud of too, and our leaders, who are justifiably proud of the proposal for LaGuardia, should go back to work and demand more.