Flushing traffic plan just a band-aid
Jul 16, 2010 | 6136 views | 0 0 comments | 30 30 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Dear Editor:

Proposals highlighted within your excellent article “'Flushing' away a bad traffic situation" (Holly Tsang - July 8) represent short-term cosmetic solutions to growing long-term traffic and parking problems facing downtown Flushing.

There has been a simple alternative available for decades but ignored by many. Consider the opportunities missed by the Flushing Commons development project planned for Municipal Lot 1. This site was originally considered by New York City and transportation planners from various agencies in the 1960s for construction of an inter-modal bus terminal.

This facility would take hundreds of buses off the surrounding streets, where they discharge and pick up riders. Since that time, generation after generation of public officials on a bipartisan basis for almost fifty years have failed to secure any funding necessary to support environmental review, design, engineering and construction of this badly needed transportation improvement.

Since the 1960s, there has been an explosion in the number of commuters riding buses to Flushing and transferring to the number 7 subway line. This has been complimented by a huge growth of commercial businesses accompanied by the demolition of homes to support construction of apartment houses and multi-family homes in the surrounding neighborhood.

Construction of a climate controlled inter-modal bus terminal could assist in improving traffic circulation in and around the intersection of Main Street and Roosevelt Avenue, along with the rest of downtown Flushing. Tens of thousands of rush hour riders would be protected from being abused by hot summers and cold winters.

There could be a smoother transfer between the bus and subway. Using air-rights over any inter-modal bus terminal could continue providing hundreds of badly needed parking spaces.

How disappointing that there appear to be no brave elected officials willing to step forward and honor this commitment from decades ago before this final opportunity disappears forever.


Larry Penner

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