May 23, 2011 Staff Report
Watch out pigeons, garbage dumpers and food vendors!
Joe Conley, chairman of Community Board 2, is coming after you. He is on a crusade to clean up – and ultimately beautify – the areas beneath the No. 7 train stations. His vision, with the aid of Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer, is to introduce bike racks and, perhaps, benches, below the stations.
Conley, at a recent Community Board 2 meeting at the Sunnyside Community Center, displayed photos of white paste that blanketed the street adjacent to the 52nd /Lincoln Ave. subway station and said: “This isn’t paint; this is pigeon droppings and it’s unacceptable.” As about 50 people grimaced at the sight of the photos, Conley said he is putting pressure on the MTA to clean it up.
Conley went on to discuss many other problems. “There are plastic bags filled with garbage that are constantly being dumped under the 46th Street subway station,” he said. Armed with photos, he said it is an eyesore and that he wants the Department of Sanitation to take care of it. He is calling on that agency to go through the contents of the garbage bags and find out who is responsible for putting it there. He then wants those responsible to be issued with a summons.
“This is in our face and it is unacceptable,” Conley said.
Other items that Conley believes need to be rectified include removing the newspaper stands at the 46thStreet station, which are also plagued by pigeon feces. He said the stands need to be replaced with a single unit, with a slot provided for each publication. He said he would work with Sunnyside Shines, Sunnyside’s business improvement district on the matter.
He also wants to make it harder for street vendors to operate underneath the subway stations. He is calling on the Department of Transportation to install additional traffic barriers as a means to block the food carts from entering the space below the stations.
He is asking people to call Community Board 2 at (718) 533-8773 if there are any issues like these that need to be address—or suggests residents reach out to Van Bramer’s office at (718) 383-9566.
Thanks, I believe I will.
And you enjoy living in filth, with paralytic civic leaders who can do
little or nothing about nearly everything.
If you like Sacramento stay there.
I suggest to all Queens residents disgusted with pigeon droppings– under the number seven tracks or anywhere else–is that they take a hint from Sacramento, California where I now happily reside. I have seen only one–I repeat ONE–“winged rat” (pigeon) in the seven months I have been here. And maybe two splattered bird droppings on a sidewalk. Just try to imagine that after living in Sunnyside/Woodside for seventeen years! And very, very few dog excreta. And very little or no paper litter. (Of course, these latter two problems are a digression from my point. People are just cleaner here by nature, no prejudice intended–just a simple fact–and the laws against untidiness are stringent.)
What they do have here instead of pigeons are crows–big black crows–who, though slightly ominous in appaerance, seem to be better toilet-trained.
Joe Conley–are you listening? Either send in the crows or send in the clowns. Be bold and imaginative. Get around the neighborhood at two or three in the morning when the “pigeon ladies” feed the creatures. Enforce the existing laws–at those odd hours–relating to feeding, littering, pooperscooping, etc.
And, of course, visit Sacramento. Then go back home and weep.
And when all else fails, go west young man, go west!
Once again, your reasoning is flawed; I chose to make a statement of my own–related to, but not dependent upon, your “snarky” comment. I can do that, can’t I? (btw, aren’t the Left supposed to abhor “bullying”? Were you absent the day that was covered?)
If you ever decide to sue, for educational malpractice, whatever institution of “higher learning” you attended (assuming you went to college), I will testify for you in a court of law. I promise.
You STILL haven’t demonstrated the truth in what you said you and I both “knew” was “true.”
John I’ve been giving you the benefit of the doubt and assuming that you were more an internet troll than a raving lunatic – that was an error of judgment.
I did not call you a ‘politician’ – go reread my post. That would obviously be inaccurate – we all know you never have been and never will be a politician. The democratic system exists to keep crazy people like you out of power. No, I called you a ‘political wacko’.
Again, I’m not going to spend any more time ‘proving’ that there are plants that grow with less sunlight than other plants because creating a real park under the viaduct is a million miles away from being politically feasible.
Good for Mr. Wilson! Sartke’s comments are obnoxious and very personal.
You have submitted the following photo as evidence that plants can grow BENEATH viaducts/bridges, as proof that park-like “green spaces” could be cultivated UNDERNEATH the 7 Train:
This is your evidence?! All can see that the photo was taken FROM BENEATH the bridge, alright–looking OUT and AWAY from it–BESIDE it, as it were. Very clearly, your own photo shows that, as the topography moves toward the area BENEATH the bridge–toward the area from which the shot was taken–the plant life gives way to…bare earth. The actual area beneath the bridge, in your photo, is not seen…which renders your “evidence” of what grows under a bridge…useless. Your own photo indicts you as a crank–a “silly” person.
And, sartke, really, name-calling is not an argument. “Wacko?” I think you are projecting.( By the way, I’m NOT a “politician; I am involved in a political contest to rid us of a “politician.” )
Don’t want to discuss anything? That just proves the axiom that those who identify themselves as persons on the Left are unable to “discuss” facts as facts; their emotions become “facts.” Sad.
Incidentally, you never provide us with the names, and nature, of plants that will (or could) turn the area UNDER the 7 Train into a park-like oasis. You DID say that you and I “both know it is possible.” I don’t know that. Your attempts to read my mind have failed.
I am convinced that character always reveals itself–through conflict. You prove this.
Sartke you are snarky!
Thank you for mentioning the food carts! The permeating smell as you step off the train and walk within a block’s radius is enough to make me think they should go.
John: “hey” “look” “it’s a comparably dark bridge” “with things growing under it”:
We both know it’s possible and you’re just trolling me, I’m not interested in having this (or really any) discussion with the local political wacko.
Someone please take a crowbar and pry those food carts out from under the 7 train. That Halal cart hasn’t moved from it’s spot in at least a year, and you can clearly see how filthy the pavers are around it. If they want to run a business in the neighborhood, then sign a lease and pay rent. Actually be a part of the neighborhood, instead of squatting in the middle of our subway stop. Now there’s a taco truck putting roots down, too.
As for Lodati Park, I agree that it has been neglected by the city and completely overtaken by dogs and bands of volleyball playing adults. I’ve been in the neighborhood long enough to know that the park has changed. I’m not making any judgements – I don’t know if taking up all that space with volleyball courts and coolers is against park rules – but it’s definitely changed. It’s really not a park for kids to play at anymore. It’s absolutely turned into one giant dog run. It’s 8:02 am and I’ll guarantee you there are at least a couple of dogs off the leash doing their business on the blacktop right now. I’ve seen pit bulls running off leash there plenty of times.
What can you say? Sometimes things change.
I did as you suggested. I “googled” “viaducts”. While I saw much green life BESIDE the various viaducts, I saw no green plants BENEATH any viaducts. Please, enlighten us all as to the names and nature of GREEN plants that will thrive to create a park-like atmosphere UNDER the 7Train.
The only way to fix the problem of pigeon feces (primarily @ 52nd St. station) is to enforce the laws against those who drop birdseed as far as two blocks away. This is a job for the Sanitation Department, though it will be difficult for them as they are too busy ticketing violators of alternate-side-of-the-street rules. Also, let’s have the MTA come up with some REAL solutions to the pigeon roosting problems!
Food carts – no prob.
Elmhurst and Jackson Heights are minutes away by bus or train – if this is the closest open space they have, they might as well be considered ‘locals’. We all pay taxes to use city property, not just the city property within a few blocks of us. I spend plenty of time in parks outside of Sunnyside, and I don’t feel like I don’t belong in any of them. I’m a resident of NYC not just a resident of a neighborhood.
But I agree with you on Sunnyside Gardens. I don’t think the members have bad intentions, but the end result is that the only true green space in this neighborhood is off-limits to anyone who can’t afford the steep fee.
The fee isn’t absurd considering the upkeep costs, it’s just absurd that anyone should have to pay one to use a park in a city with hundreds of parks. It’s greatly underutilized and underfunded and would probably be better off if it were free and run by the city. It would potentially lose some of the ‘local community’ vibe, but we’d gain a true park.
Sartke – short of asking to see their “papers” believe the fact they arrive primarily by car and train is evidence enough. Besides I’ve spoken to a couple of them in the past and learned they come from Elmhurst and Jackson Heights due to lack of green space in their neighborhoods.
Would be nice for locals to enjoy all available neighborhood parks – which by the the way I believe Sunnyside Gardens Park is receiving tax payer public funds for this private park from politicians like Crowley and Markey in addition to Con Ed money which is weird given the steep membership fees. Meanwhile Lodi park gets little to no attention which is just plain wrong and media should investigate. Something stings over there.
John K. Wilson, while there are certainly some plants that wouldn’t be ideal for the spot, the idea that there is no plant on this planet that would grow in a spot that only receives sunlight during *some* of the day is silly. Google “viaducts” and you’ll find no shortage of plants growing under similar structures.
Sunny Skies, do you have any evidence that the people who use Lodati Park are typically outsiders? I’ve never interacted with them, but I see no reason why many of the Hispanic people playing soccer aren’t part of Sunnyside’s large Hispanic population.
CLEAN THE AREA – PLEASE!
The area underneath the 7 train in sunnyside and along the QB sidewalks have so much potential for beautification projects. Starting with planting mature trees with wrought iron planters along the queens blvd (akin to Park Avenue). Might even encourage local artists to showcase appropriate art installations as well.
Hello Mr. Crowley and JVB – While we’re on the subject here’s an idea Be good if we can raise revenue for the community by reclaiming and making better use of the precious open space at Lodati Park on 43rd & Skillman commandeered exclusively for the use of outsiders on the weekends for day long soccer and volley ball games. These people purchase little from local grocers opting instead to bring in their own food / drinks in coolers or purchased from shady non-licensed food vendors planted nearby. One idea is a real flea market akin to that of nearly every growing neighborhood recently hightlighted in the NYTimes. Would be generous of you to see attached links below for more info. Can charge vendors a minimum to participate and would go a long way towards funding future projects and uniting our “small town in the big city” and all it’s residents unlike that snooty Sunnyside Gardens Park whose members rather pride themselves in remaining insular charging membership fees in an effort to stave off so called undesireables (which includes the majority of residents) by hogging up one of the few green spaces in the neighborhood. In sum one park taken over by outsiders while the other shuts the door to local residents (hope they both enjoy the racket while local leaders continue to look the other way until real leadership appears on the scene soon) If you lived in the immediate vicinity you’d be aware of this and frustrated by it on the daily as well.
p.s. I applaud your efforts on our behalf – a fine start
Keep the food cards!
What needs to be fixed is the garbage and feces on the street! My block has a huge problem with open garbage cans blowing garbage onto the street, feces, and lack of superintendants/owners taking care of their sidwalk. It is disgusting and 311 doesn’t care about what happens in this neighborhood. How can we fix this?
As long as the train is there, there will be pigeons there. So, they are going to have to continually clean the area to keep it up. I don’t see that happening. And yes, people need to stop feeding the pigeons. I don’t see that happening either. All of 46th Street needs to be cleaned. It’s always filthy, no thanks to the nasty, nasty Key Food, that frequently smells of urine and mildew. Let’s hope their renovation makes it better – if that ever happens. That new building is really ugly too btw.
I’m glad that someone is thinking about cleaning up the mess. So the community board Conley is on to something at least.
If anything, I would like to see more support for food carts rather than less. Those that we have are serving a valuable service to the community, especially under the 7 where they enliven what otherwise is about as welcoming as a parking garage.
The 7 train trestle is a signature feature of our neighborhood, and I would love to see it cleaned up underneath, as much as anyone. But the carts are part of the solution, not the problem
sartke, “Green space” under the 7 train? “Green space” requires plants, which require chlorophyll, which requires steady sunlight, which cannot penetrate the steel and concrete of the elevated train. Not gonna happen; but it is a nice thought.
Food vendors are ok – but the pigeon crap is not! And the rats near the 52nd Street subway – ugh! And the derelicts in that so called “park”. Close that park and pave the sidewalk!
How about they start by getting someone out there with a powerwasher to push away the human feces and the little pile of TP that’s smeared on the south face of every single northern pylon under the 7 from 43rd to 40th? Pretty sure it’s been there for over a year. . .
There are places where the food vendors could serve just as easily without putting themselves in a pedestrian path on Queens Blvd.
I’m all for (finally) cleaning up the pigeon feces and the trash bags (I really can’t figure out why this was JUST found to be a problem. While Conley is at it, why not come up with some better enforcement so people on the streets south of Queens Blvd. pick up after their dogs? That would be a much worthier pursuit than food vendors. If those vendors have permits to run their businesses, what harm do they do? NYC politicians need to choose their battles a little more wisely.
where do those food vendors go to the bathroom?where do they wash their hands?i wouldnt eat from those carts!!
I like the food carts– but aren’t they regulated already in some way? Can we please kill the pigeons? I actually have seen people feeding them and discarded bags in trash cans labeled “pigeon feed 40 lbs.”
I’m all for cleaning, and benches, and bike racks would be fantastic. (Some green space would be even better.)
But why are we bothering the food vendors? They bring street life to an otherwise bleak area and a quick meal to someone in a hurry. I’d rather look at food than concrete.
Whats wrong with food carts? we all gotta eat…right?