2014-07-25 / Columnists

Slice Of Life

by Beth Hanning

I love the summer. It is probably one of the reasons I became a teacher. At this point in my teaching career I often forget why I wanted to become a teacher (I started teaching because I loved reading and writing, loved seeing excitement on students’ faces when they loved literature, etc.). I never started teaching because I loved data and non-fiction. Enough about teaching, my close friend Jean Condon says no “teacher talk” all summer.

The reason I bring up how much I love summer is I cannot believe how during the beach season and what some people are calling Rockaway’s Renaissance that the New York City Department of Transportation is ripping up streets.

It all started in the beautiful spring weather when I was going to and from work. I always leave very early for my 12-minute commute. Good thing because some mornings the commute became almost an hour due to lane closings due to construction on Cross Bay Boulevard. Thanks to social media I only got stuck in the traffic once and began paying the toll and going to/or from work through Flatbush Avenue.

I only had one terrible traffic day when I thought I was a genius and cut across the Belt Parkway West to Flatbush Avenue and came to a complete stop. Oh, this was because the geniuses behind the pipeline also were closing the south side of Flatbush Avenue completely and diverting traffic to the northbound side.

So both roads into the peninsula were pretty much a traffic mess.

Now the past couple of weeks we have had road closures on Rockaway Beach Boulevard for paving. At the same time that Rockaway Beach Boulevard, was being paved, Beach Channel Drive by Waldbaum’s was also partially closed. I am not a road expert, nor an engineer; however I did not see the urgency with ripping up Rockaway Beach Boulevard during our busiest month.

Don’t you worry while the construction was causing mayhem in traffic; the Department of Transportation was still writing tickets for the meters on Beach 116th Street

Maybe just for a few days they could have directed traffic (they are technically traffic agents). They could have stood at Newport and Beach 116th and directed people not to turn to the Boulevard even though the traffic was backed up on Beach Channel Drive. Those people who tried to evade a bit of traffic then had to turn back to Beach Channel Drive because the Boulevard was closed.

Now I would not mind traffic or construction if it was our beloved boardwalk that was being worked on.

Nor do I want to complain in the middle of one of the most beautiful months of July I can remember. But I just wish once it seemed like the city cared about our little peninsula.

Have a great week everyone; keep enjoying this beautiful weather.

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