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Wenner and Rohr Pls. one way, once again

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After many months of petitioning and appearances before Community Board 10, the residents of two small streets in the Ferry Point community will finally get their wishes granted as the Department of Transportation made their blocks one way.

Both Wenner and Rohr places, which run just one block each between the Hutchinson River Parkway service road and Brush Avenue, were inundated with tractor-trailer truck traffic as giant 18-wheelers from the commercial establishments in their neighborhood used the streets as a short cut to an entrance to the Whitestone Bridge.

Now, the city DOT has announced in an effort to address the situation, and acting concurrently with a massive plan to totally reconstruct the Throggs Neck approach to the Whitestone Bridge undertaken by the MTA, it will make the streets one way.

“Expect [the one way conversion of Rohr and Wenner places] to be done on Tuesday, January 20,” said Scott Gastel, city DOT deputy press secretary.

Both streets will run westbound towards Brush Avenue, where a Pepsi bottling plant now under construction will likely increase the burden of truck traffic through the residential portion of the community.

On November 20, 2008, Community Board 10 overwhelmingly passed a resolution with just two no votes requesting that the DOT make both streets one way running west bound.

At that meeting, there was some debate about the controversy surrounding the direction change of St. Paul Avenue in Pelham Bay, but all of the home owners on both blocks have signed petitions saying they want the change. There appears to be no opposition from inside the community.

“We are very happy that the DOT was able to accommodate the community,” said CB 10 district manager Kenneth Kearns, about the one-way conversion.

The Ferry Point Civic Association, Inc. collected signatures from homeowners on Wenner and Rohr places, and did all of the legwork after a tractor-trailer truck knocked down a one-way sign on Wenner Place that, according to JoAnne Sohmers, president of the Ferry Point Park Civic Association, Inc, the MTA had put in place when it created on on-ramp to the Whitestone Bridge.

Originally, there were signs indicating that both streets ran one way, but City DOT did not put them in place. City DOT is in charge of such matters – the way City streets run. When a truck knocked down the one-way sign on Wenner Place, it required extra effort to put the sign back into place.

“I contacted the city DOT, state DOT, and MTA,” Sohmers said. “It turns out that the MTA placed the one way traffic sign on Wenner Place, so the city DOT didn’t know it was there.”

Since city DOT was not aware of the MTA’s actions, which was previously thought to be the work of state DOT, Ferry Point residents had to go through the much longer process of getting city DOT to turn both streets back into one way streets going west.

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