Middletown Rd. construction limits precious parking

No Parking signs related to construction at 3030 Middletown Road ruffled feathers in Pelham Bay. The temporary signs were removed on April 5. Photo by Daniel Beekman

No one has moved into the new apartment building under construction at 3030 Middletown Road. But already the building has claimed a number of precious Pelham Bay parking spots.

Red and white signs declare “No Parking” beside the construction site on Middletown and around the corner on Hollywood Avenue. On Middletown and the near side of Hollywood, signs read “No Parking Anytime.” A pair of “No Parking 7 am–6 pm” signs on the far side of Hollywood were hastily ordered down on March 24.

Spencer Estate resident Arthur DiPierro wasn’t surprised when the signs went up on Middletown; he’s seen construction machinery moving in and out there. But Hollywood?

“You have No Parking signs in front of houses,” DiPierro said. “The developers are taking more room than they need.”

The city’s Department of Transportation issued permits for temporary No Parking signs on Middletown and Hollywood to NYC 23 Builder Corp on January 14. According to the DOT’s online database, those permits expired on April 5.

“The developers shouldn’t be allowed to clear the whole block,” said Mary Jane Musano of the Waterbury LaSalle Community Association.

DiPierro takes lunch at the Middletown Senior Center, across from the construction site. Representatives from Senator Jeffrey Klein’s office visited 3030 Middletown Road on Friday, March 20.

“DOT needs to be a good neighbor and accommodate the community,” Klein said. “Parking spots are at premium in this neighborhood and the needs of seniors and residents should be given priority.”

DOT inspectors also visited the site on March 20. According to spokesman Monty Dean, the agency has backtracked – instructing 3030 Middletown Road’s developers to retreat from the far side of Hollywood. Ed Romeo, president of the Pelham Bay Taxpayers Association, hadn’t heard of the signs.

“They’re putting up a large building there,” Romeo said. “They’re moving machinery in and out. Of course we’re going to lose some parking spots. But I’m concerned. This building is going to take years to complete.”

Danielle Trosa often parks on Hollywood across from 3030 Middletown Road – whenever she has a hankering for Chinese food. On March 20, Trosa nearly missed the No Parking signs.

“Oh! That’s annoying,” she said, climbing back into her car.

Musano had hoped 3030 Middletown Road would become a municipal parking lot, rather than a coop. So had Pelham Bay Taxpayer Anita Valenti.

“The library is there, and the post office,” Valenti said. “You circle around looking for a parking spot. You get a $115 ticket.”

Musano called the No Parking signs “outrageous.”

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