JACKSON HEIGHTS, Queens (PIX11) — People in New York City are serious about their parks and their neighborhoods.
The “Open Streets” Program created corridors for pedestrians, recreation and cyclists during specific times, depending on the area. The initiative was created during the pandemic along 300 blocks and 150 locations around the boroughs.
One of the first and largest is along 34th Avenue in Jackson Heights, Queens. The city presentation said the area will now be called “Paseo Park.”
It stretches for 26 blocks.
Jim Burke is a neighbor who helps program some of the activities.
“They listened to everyone and came up with the plan. The cornerstone of this plan is make these blocks in front of the schools safe,” he said.
Six plazas with permanent barricades and pedestrian areas will be created during the summer and in 2023.
But neighbor Mary McGuckin told PIX11 News she thinks the program that has outlasted itself.
“There has been no studies,” she said. “Traffic backup is horrendous.”
Cars are allowed to park in most areas and local access is allowed along 34th Avenue for deliveries and pick up and drop off. Some delivery access areas will also be created.
Click here to see the most resent presentation from NYC Department of Transportation to the local community board in Jackson Heights.
The final coordination will be done in May. The city held workshops and received comments from elected leaders.
Plans for other locations in the boroughs are also being finalized. Some new locations will also be tried out this summer.