CB 10 to DOT: Make Ferry Pt. streets one way

A sign limiting the weight of tractor-trailer trucks using Rohr Place (above) illustrates the problem residents of the street of residential homes face with over-sized trucks using their street as a short-cut to the Whitestone Bridge approach. Photo by Victor Chu

Residents of two short blocks in the Ferry Point community have wanted their streets to run one-way for years prevent 18-wheelers from cutting through their quiet residential street.

When the state Department of Transportation did some roadwork along the Hutchinson River Parkway service road a few years back, it temporarily reversed sthe streets.

Now, it appears a unanimous Community Board 10 vote on Thursday, November 20 will kick off a traffic study that will most likely result in the streets being returned to their former direction, albeit probably not in time for the holiday season.

Residents of Wenner and Rohr places, which run parallel to one another between the Hutchinson River Parkway Service Road and Brush Avenue, have been concerned for years about large tractor-trailer trucks that would cut down their streets for a quick route onto the Whitestone Bridge. With increased industrial and commercial construction in the neighborhood, those concerns became even more urgent.

“We worked on and off for 10 years on getting Wenner and Rohr places to run one-way west,” said Dotti Poggi of the Ferry Point Community Advocates, one group in the area working on the issue. “When the state DOT did construction, the right paperwork was not filed with city DOT to get a one-way street.”

Poggi said that her group inquired into the direction of the streets after some residents expressed wishes to have both streets run one-way west. One one-way stop sign was placed on Wenner Place by state DOT, but was knocked down and could not be replaced.

“There is no record of any one-way signs according to the city,” Poggi said. “There is no way to replace the sign without having the city DOT make the streets one-way first.”

While there was some debate at CB 10’s meeting about whether the board should vote without seeing pictures of the locations, citing the tumult caused by the St. Paul Avenue reversal controversy in Pelham Bay, the board received three pages of petitions from the residents on the two small blocks –virtually everyone living there.

CB 10 district manager Kenneth Kearns said he would send a letter to city DOT requesting that they begin work on a traffic study of the location, which may take up to three months to complete. According to city DOT, it will in most cases, as a matter of procedure, conduct traffic study on requests from a community board.

“We have not yet received the written communication from Community Board 10, but it has always been DOT’s position to implement a community board’s requests,” said Scott Gastell, DOT spokesman, on December 1. “DOT will be implementing these changes, but we cannot get rolling until we receive that official communication.”

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