Nov. 18, 2015 By Christian Murray
Residents are fed up with construction materials, couches and food dumped by street vendors on 43rd Street between Skillman Avenue and Northern Boulevard.
“The street is appalling,” Christine McKay-Vega said at the Community Board 2 meeting earlier this month. “The garbage is disgusting and there are people who live in their cars.”
Vega walks along 43rd Street most days as she escorts her son to middle school from Sunnyside to Astoria.
“No one is taking responsibility for it,” she said.
The street is in a governmental no-man’s land.
43rd Street spans Community Boards 1 and 2, and the 108 and 114 Precincts; the dividing line runs near the railroad tracks.
“This dumping problem has been going on for years,” Dorothy Morehead, a longtime Sunnyside resident and Community Board 2 member, said. “Every single day you see new stuff down there.”
“What is relatively new is the homeless people,” Morehead said.
Morehead said that because the street is at the very edge of each precinct’s coverage area, it is not very well patrolled.
She said that when her car was stolen from 43rd Street this summer, she waited for four hours for a police officer to arrive. Not one patrol car had come during that period, she said.
Morehead said the solution might be to erect cameras, which would help catch the perpetrators and act as a deterrent.
Patrick O’Brien, chairman of Community Board 2, said that he has reached out to the Department of Transportation and other agencies and has yet to receive a response. He recognized that the street poses a big problem and said he would continue to follow up.