BY LUIS GRONDA
A civic leader is proposing to eliminate a few parking meters on Cross Bay Boulevard to give seniors a safer place to park.
Howard Kamph, president of the Ozone Park Civic Association and member of Community Board 10, wants to eliminate the muni-meters on 156th Avenue in front of the Waldbaums supermarket in Howard Beach. His proposal, which he submitted to the Dept. of Transportation, would convert it to free parking, with a “No Parking” sign posted between 7 a.m. and 9 a.m. in the morning so that the elderly at the nearby Howard Beach senior center can park somewhere closer to the center.
Kamph said it would be safer for the seniors to have that parking available to them and avoid crossing Cross Bay Boulevard, which can be dangerous for them.
“We need the parking there so they don’t have to walk over from the other side of the boulevard,” he said.
Judy Ascherman, the manager at the senior center, said it would be a positive for the seniors to have that extra parking for their use.
Not all of the seniors have moved into the new facility, Ascherman said, and it is unclear how many parking spaces would be available in their lot when everybody settles in. It could overflow, leading to some seniors having to look elsewhere to leave their car.
“That would be a wonderful idea, we could definitely use the extra parking,” she said.
Ascherman added that seniors also look for parking on other side streets, including Cohancy and Killarney Streets, in addition to traveling to the opposite side of the boulevard.
The senior center moved into their current location, at 155-55 Cross Bay Blvd., last year after Superstorm Sandy destroyed their old headquarters near St. Helen’s Church. Kamph said the seniors used to have more parking at the lot located adjacent to the church.
A DOT spokesperson said the agency is reviewing the request.
Reach Luis Gronda at (718) 357-7400, Ext. 127, firstname.lastname@example.org, or @luisgronda.