Gateway to Bronx Zoo cries for repair

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After numerous community complaints, a road that serves as a gateway to the Bronx Zoo, an eyesore to tourists and poor example of the borough, will finally be repaired – in five years.

The road in question, which runs from the exit and entrance ramp of exit 6 off the Bronx River Parkway to the eastern gate of the Bronx Zoo, is choked with potholes, making treacherous path for any moving vehicle.

In addition, the road loops around and connects the Bronx River Gate of the zoo with Bronx Park East and Boston Road, a path that has also seen better days.

Now that the Department of Transportation has plans in place to fix the road, drivers will finally find relief and tourists, a brighter image of the borough.

“There is a plan for the total capital reconstruction of the road, including new sidewalks and sewers,” Craig Chin, a spokesman for DOT, confirmed. “The DOT does fill in potholes on all city streets.”

The move comes after the Bronx Zoo contacted DOT about the road’s poor repair leaving a shoddy gateway to the world-renowned park.

“We have reported the road to the DOT, and the commissioner is looking into it,” said Bronx Zoo spokeswoman Linda Corcoran. “Unfortunat­ely, since the road is not on our property, all we can do is report it.”

The road appears orphaned, not claimed by any community board or police precinct.

“Technically, our board ends at the street on Bronx Park East, but we are always responsible and have taken responsibility for the road on more than one occasion,” said John Fratta, Community Board 11 district manager.

Patrolled by the 52 Precinct, as is all of Bronx Park, some speculated Community Board 7 should be involved, but geographically this does not seem feasible.

The unnamed road was built when Exit 6 of the Bronx River Parkway was constructed, though it’s not deemed part of the parkway.

Regardless of what local agency is responsible for the road, residents will see an improvement, however, according to Chin, they will have to be patient.

“Right now,” he said, “[the project] is in the budget for fiscal year 2013.”

Updated 5:29 pm, October 21, 2011
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