MONDAY: Transportation Committee Meeting Regarding The Nassau Avenue Reconstruction Project

April 19, 2012 ·
Filed under: 11222, Greenpoint, Greenpoint Brooklyn, Greenpoint Magic 

As promised (and organized by the fabulous co-chair of Community Board 1’s Transportation Committee, Karen Nieves, with BIG help from City Councilman Steve Levin and Assemblyman Joe Lentol), here it is!

Nassau Avenue Reconstruction Community Meeting
Monday, April 23, 2012 at 6:30 p.m.
Lutheran Church of the Messiah
129 Russell Street
Brooklyn, New York 11222

Spotted On Kent Street: Kent St

April 17, 2012 ·
Filed under: 11222, Greenpoint, Greenpoint Brooklyn, Greenpoint Magic 

It would appear instead of erecting “Kent Av” signs on each block of Kent Street (which while incompetent, would at least be consistent), the Department of Transportation got this corner correct!

They have been “fixed”! Mind you, the signs were (apparently) in need of replacing in the first place did their job quite well. Rather, this was (and is) a matter of typography, geography, bureaucracy and incompetence. Please excuse me if I am being redundant.

Spotted In Greenpoint: Kent Avenue

April 16, 2012 ·
Filed under: 11222, Greenpoint, Greenpoint Brooklyn, Greenpoint Magic 

Whoops.

P.S.: Props go out to Ann Kansfield of the Greenpoint Reformed Church for bringing this gem to my attention.  I have word that 311 has been called about this, lest you are wondering.

LAST GASP: Space Piracy On Greenpoint Avenue?

April 13, 2012 ·
Filed under: 11222, Bloomblight, Greenpoint, Greenpoint Brooklyn, Greenpoint Magic 

blockingstandsidewalk

SmashedTruck

The proprietor of Red Star Bar writes (in an email entitled “Circus on Greenpoint Avenue” dated April 12, 2012):

Heather,

The situation with the lot across the street from Red Star has turned into an absolute free for all circus!  I’m sure I’ve complained to you about this countless times in the past, as I have to anyone else who will listen.

Just to give you the background info, in case you forgot. These guys store large, 30 yard dumpsters, stacked 15-20 feet high, in the lot along with massive dump trucks and the occasional 18 wheeler.  On occasion, I can see them from my office window, digging holes with heavy equipment and burying god knows what.   Of course whatever debris and garbage is “left over” from these dumpsters constantly blows all over the streets and sidewalks.  There is no shortage of flies, rats, raccoons and stray cats wandering in and out of the lot on a nightly basis.

I’ve had words with these “gentleman” in the past.  Like the time they were rearranging the dumpsters in the lot and decided it would be ok to put some on the street and sidewalk in front of Red Star.  The smell from the brown liquid oozing out of the dumpsters was just wonderful.  My customers were quite pleased with the stench as they attempted to have lunch. My staff really enjoyed hosing off the sidewalks as well.  In general, it’s almost a full time job collecting the garbage and debris that blows out of the lot and inevitably ends up all over my sidewalk.   It’s been a beautiful few weeks and on most days we can’t open our windows because of the flying dust, debris and flies!

In addition to the trash and stench issues, over the past few years 3 cars have been smashed by these guys.  2 by way of hit and run with their trucks and 1 by debris flying out of the lot on a windy winter night.

Today was an absolute CIRCUS!  I guess since my complaints to various city agencies have been ignored, these guys have decided to become more blatant and brazen.  I guess operating an illegal waste transfer station isn’t paying the bills?  They’ve now decided to open an illegal scrap yard as well!  They spent the ENTIRE DAY removing scrap and junk vehicles from the lot with a fork lift and tow truck, dragging them into the STREET and dismantling them.  RIGHT IN THE MIDDLE OF GREENPOINT AVENUE!

The parking situation around here is a nightmare to begin with.  These guys took up half the street and about 15 parking spaces to run their illegal auto salvage operation today.  Not to mention the fact that it’s just unsafe!  Cars and trucks were forced to squeeze past these guys ALL DAY.  There was almost several collisions as drivers tried to navigate in between chopped up vehicles, parked 18 wheelers, roll-backs, tow trucks and fork lifts.  Ridiculous!

At one point there was no less than 5 vehicles being chopped and dismantled, outside the lot, in the street.  They were using sledge hammers, blow torches and gas powered saws to hack away all day.  Of course I went outside to take pictures, since it’s almost unbelievable!  While I was catching all the action on film, one of the guys came over and said “NO PICTURES! PUT THE CAMERA AWAY!”  Obviously that didn’t deter me.

They finished up work at the illegal dumping ground around 7pm.  Now there’s broken glass, metal bits, chunks of plastic, spilled oil and gasoline all over the street where they were working.

…what can be done about this?  Nobody seems to give two shits.  I’ve researched the lot on ACRIS and the Department of Building web sites.  It’s listed as a STALLED CONSTRUCTION SITE.  This lot is hardly stalled or inactive.  This bullshit goes on at all hours of the day and night.  The owners have a violation for the fence they put up around the lot, with no permit.  If they didn’t bother to get a permit for a fence, do you think they have a permit to operate a waste transfer station, store vehicles, operate a salvage yard or a scrap metal operation???  Of course not!

This lot is anything BUT stalled or inactive.  Today there were no less than 10 guys working in that lot.  Trucks and excavation equipment operate in that lot at any given hour of the day and night.  There are dumpsters, vehicles and equipment stacked 15-20 feet high and are constantly being removed, repositioned or disassembled.  And it’s been going on for YEARS!  Does the DOB inspector, that files periodic reports, not see the same things I do?  This equipment isn’t even construction equipment!  Either someone is being paid off or they just don’t give a fuck!

DOB

http://a810-bisweb.nyc.gov/bisweb/PropertyProfileOverviewServlet?boro=3&houseno=80&street=west%20st&requestid=0&s=A03C41B885B461E4F46BD08866A7430E

The dumpsters belong to a company called Xolle

http://xolle.com/

The vehicles being scrapped belong to the same company that’s storing the dump trucks and 18 wheelers on the lot, Pilot Trucking of Astoria.

I don’t  know what else I can do. I’m at the end of my rope with these clowns. In a city where you need a permit to wipe your ass, these clown operate with blatent disregard for ANYONE and do so with impunity!    My neighbors are fed up.  My customers are disgusted.

People love to eat at a restaurant across from an illegal garbage dump and scrap yard.  It’s very inviting!

Below are the pictures I took of today’s events…

Which I have taken the liberty of uploading as a slide show for easy perusal. Enjoy gentle readers!

I have to wonder what 80 West Street’s other neighbors, Paulie Gee’s for example, think of this activity?

To be continued…

MARK YOUR CALENDARS: Nassau Avenue Reconstruction Community Meeting!

April 6, 2012 ·
Filed under: 11222, Greenpoint, Greenpoint Brooklyn, Greenpoint Magic 

This comes courtesy of our Community Board ‘s Transportation Chair, Karen Nieves. She writes:

Please mark your calendar!!! Nassau Avenue Reconstruction Community Meeting is set for Monday, April 23rd 6:30pm at the Lutheran Church on Russell Street.

I have word a flyer will be distributed shortly. When I receive one I will pass it along here. In the meantime, those of you who have concerns and/or issues arising from this project (For example: having port–o-let stationed next to the front door of your residence which turns over and disperses its “contents” on your front yard.*) take note!

Nassau Avenue Construction Community Meeting
Monday, April 23, 2012 at 6:30 p.m.
Lutheran Church of the Messiah
129 Russell Street
Brooklyn, New York 11222

*Yes, this really happened.

Greenpoint Photo du Jour: STOP

April 3, 2012 ·
Filed under: 11222, Greenpoint, Greenpoint Brooklyn, Greenpoint Magic 

A number of questions come to mind when I see something like this (as I did yesterday while knocking around the Garden Spot). For the purposes of this post I’ll leave them to two:

1. Has the intersection from which this piece of municipal property has been commandeered received a replacement sign?

Given the article in question is a stop sign I think this is a very pertinent question. But alas, there is no way I can find this out. And…

2. Should this item be in the possession of one of our scrap metal establishments?

This is luckily much more easily answered. I asked someone in the know and his/her answer was as follows:

No.

From The New York Shitty Inbox, Part II: This Weekly Construction Bulletin

April 2, 2012 ·
Filed under: 11222, Greenpoint, Greenpoint Brooklyn, Greenpoint Magic 

For those of you who want to know where the action is going to be this week (regarding construction on Nassau Avenue) I present this— their latest bulletin!

Greenpoint Photo du Jour: Nassau Avenue

April 2, 2012 ·
Filed under: 11222, Greenpoint, Greenpoint Brooklyn, Greenpoint Magic 

An unintended consequence of Nassau Avenue reconstruction as spotted this weekend: an ad hoc skate park! I’m glad to see the powers that be have seen fit to install pylons. They were needed— badly! As for the wisdom of skating on this stretch, well, that’s still open to question…

Live From Nassau Avenue & Leonard Street: DO NOT ENTER!

March 20, 2012 ·
Filed under: 11222, Greenpoint, Greenpoint Brooklyn, Greenpoint Magic 

Today, as promised, construction commenced on Nassau Avenue. And as I learned on at the corner of Leonard Street this afternoon it is already proving to be problematic— and downright dangerous!

The above sign graces the southeastern corner of the aforementioned intersection…

and unfortunately it appears to gone largely unnoticed by motorists. Especially those driving southbound on Leonard Street, as I personally observed.

Thus a number of Good Samaritans, including the folks at Proper Real Estate (which is located on this corner), elected to take turns flagging down motorists and making them aware of the traffic changes (and this sign). I was told by one person present that no less than twenty “close calls” (READ: near accidents) had come to pass on her watch.

As of approximately 1:30 p.m. (and numerous calls to the 94th Precinct, I’ll add) a traffic officer was stationed at this corner.

If you are wondering how something like this can happen, I’ll tell you. Per our Transportation Chair (who is keeping a very watchful on eye on this) the fault lies with the Department of Design and Construction. Or more specifically the contractor whom they have entrusted to do this work. You see, part of the contractor’s job is to ensure traffic officers are stationed at key intersections to ensure as seamless transition as is possible. As you can see, this did not happen. In addition, it was brought to my attention they did not see fit to station a traffic officer at Norman Avenue and McGuinness Boulevard (which is where a public school is located). Our Transportation Chair noticed this egregious oversight and has requested one be stationed there.

While the folks at Leonard and Nassau took this all in good humor (as seen above), the fact of the matter is this is no laughing matter. Until motorists become acclimatized to the new traffic changes (and the detours entailed therein) it is vital that our public servants be extra vigilant about raising awareness— and safe-guarding our well being. In this respect thus far they have failed miserably.

On that note if any of you, gentle readers, have witnessed any similar such problems— or simply want to make your concerns known— please contact our Community Board’s Transportation Chair, Karen Nieves, via Community Board 1’s email address at bk01@cb.nyc.gov. Thanks— and stay safe Greenpointers!

UPDATE, 8:50 p.m.: Here’s the word from the head of the 94th Precinct, D.I. Hurson:

Heather we have noticed the problems on Nassau today and tonight. I have a meeting tomorrow with the NYPD Chief of Transportation this issue will be discussed.

So we’re seeing some action on that front!

P.S.: Special thanks go out to Ms. Nieves and the head of the 94th, Deputy Inspector Hurson, for their attention to this matter— and my concerned emails!

From The New York Shitty Inbox: Nassau Avenue Reconstruction, Revised Once More

March 18, 2012 ·
Filed under: 11222, Greenpoint, Greenpoint Brooklyn, Greenpoint Magic 

For a project which has not even commenced yet I have to say the Nassau Avenue Construction project has necessitated a great deal of correspondence. The above-depicted material (which was brought to my attention by our Community Board’s Transportation Chair), dates from March 16th and appears to be the most current. NOTE/CAVEAT: the word on the street (READ: the rather large sign stationed at Nassau Avenue and Monitor Street) is work will begin March 20th. Well, they did say “on or about” March 19th…

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