Contact us at

This is our neighborhood and our community, your input is welcome and requested.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Permanent Lane Closure Lifted At Bronx-Whitestone Bridge

Permanent Lane Closure Lifted At Bronx-Whitestone Bridge

Three Lanes Open In Each Direction During Peak Drive Times

Beginning Mon., Oct. 24th

As the fall and winter holiday season gets underway there is good news for motorists who use the Bronx-Whitestone Bridge. Work requiring a round-the-clock lane closure of one of the bridge’s six lanes has been completed and three lanes in each direction will once again be available during peak drive times.

The permanent lane closure, in effect since June 2010, will be lifted over the weekend and three lanes will be available in each direction starting with the Monday morning commute on Oct. 24th. Three lanes will be maintained using newly constructed safety shoulders.

Please note: The transition required to re-open the bridge roadway to full capacity will necessitate one final period of closures in both directions, as follows:

 Fri. (10/21), 6 PM-9 PM: southbound & northbound: one lane closed; two lanes open;

 Fri. (10/21), 9 PM-6 AM (Sat 10/22): southbound & northbound: two lanes closed; one lane open;

 Sat. (10/22)-Mon. (10/24), 6 AM-3 AM: northbound: one lane closed; two lanes open; southbound: three lanes open.

“As we move closer to completing this project, which will result in wider approach roadway lanes, safety shoulders and a completely rehabilitated approach roadway deck, we appreciate the patience shown by motorists,” said Bronx-Whitestone Facility Engineer Christopher Saladino. “The project is essential in allowing us to keep the 72-year-old bridge a vital regional transportation link for many years to come.”

While lane by lane demolition and rehabilitation work was done, a reversible, movable barrier was used to maintain three traffic lanes to the Bronx during peak morning hours and three lanes to Queens in the evening and on weekends.

The nearly $200 million project, awarded to Conti Inc., began in December 2008. The work has included construction of new foundations and 15 new double-arch concrete piers beneath the bridge to support the rehabilitated, wider 12-foot lanes and the new safety shoulders.

Work on the center lane of the bridge will continue through early 2012, and the entire project is expected to be finished later that year once the old piers are removed and landscaping and drainage upgrades are completed.

A similar $109 million project to rehabilitate and widen the Bronx-Whitestone Queens approach was recently awarded jointly to E.E. Cruz, of Manhattan, and Tully Construction Co., of Queens. The work includes reconstruction and widening of the 1,010-foot-long Queens approach roadway structure, adding emergency breakdown lanes, and moving and rebuilding a local playground beneath the bridge.

“We will continue our practice of reaching out to local elected officials and community groups to help keep them informed as the Queens approach roadway project progresses and work is completed on the Bronx project as well,” said Bronx-Whitestone General Manager Ray Webb.

Similar to the Bronx approach work, the project will require a permanent lane closure, which is expected to begin in mid-2012. The reversible, movable barrier will be used again to maintain three lanes of traffic in peak directions. The northbound Third Avenue exit ramp will also be closed for approximately two years while the roadway is rebuilt.

In 2010, some 41 million vehicles used the Bronx-Whitestone Bridge, which connects the Bronx to Queens and Long Island. The bridge opened to traffic the day before the New York World’s Fair in Flushing, Queens on April 30, 1939.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Attempted burglaries

Neighbors stay alert.  It has been reported that there was a burglary attempt this afternoon  October 18th, on 6th avenue.  Three men wearing hooded sweatshirts were seen near a home acting suspiciously.  When they were approached they ran away toward Francis Lewis Park.

Friday, October 14, 2011

More neglect from DOT
By Connor Adams Sheets
Residents of one Whitestone neighborhood say they are fed up with recurring car crashes at what they describe as a dangerous intersection, and the city announced Tuesday that it will undertake a new study to evaluate whether to take steps to address their concerns.

The intersection of 149th Street and 10th Avenue has been the site of at least 30 car accidents in the past decade, neighbors say, and the damage is not limited to the vehicles involved in the incidents.

Barbara and Victor Castellano live with their family in a home on the corner in question, where two of their brood’s cars were crushed while parked by vehicles speeding through the residential area in separate incidents three years ago.

“People think it’s a four-way stop-sign, and they don’t realize it’s not and they just blow right by,” Victor Castellano said Oct. 6, the day after the most recent crash sent a driver to the hospital. “People don’t even slow down, they just fly past here.”

The Castellanos and other nearby families, including that of neighbor Janet Smith, have taken a number of avenues to get signs installed on 149th, from calling and writing the city Department of Transportation and elected officials to threatening more drastic measures.

“I’m ready to paint a yellow line and paint ‘stop’ out there and get arrested for it because I’m fed up,” Barbara Castellano said.

In September 2009, the DOT denied a request for two new stop signs at the intersection, but a spokesman said Tuesday that the DOT will initiate a new 12-week study of the location. The spokesman said there were only two injuries and no deaths to motor vehicle occupants recorded there between 2006 and 2010, and no pedestrian injuries or deaths.

Neighbor Monica Rubin’s said her fence was destroyed when an errant vehicle drove through it, and a motorcyclist was killed near the corner several years ago after colliding with a vehicle at the intersection.

"We have kids walking home from school,” Rubin said last week, a day after the Honda van and Infiniti sedan crashed. “Yesterday my son was riding his bike right near here, and the car was up in their yard. Imagine if he had been there. It’s insane.”

Photo courtesy the Castellano family


Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Whitestone Bridge Lane Closures

Evening lane closures tomorrow (Tues 10/4) at the Bronx-Whitestone Bridge to allow for a concrete pour. On Tuesday starting at 6pm, we will have 2 lanes open to the Bronx and 2 lanes (rather than 3) open to Queens. There may be delays in the Queens-bound direction during this time because that is the more heavily traveled direction for evening rush hour at the BWB. (You may recall that during our current Bronx approach project, we have a permanent lane closure in place for the ongoing construction so we normally only have 5 of the 6 lanes available for traffic, but 3 lanes are always open in the peak direction.) We apologize for any inconvenience!  The work is weather-permitting.