An idea that would increase parking in a Bronx community may be taking shape.
Community leaders are meeting and advocating for decking over the Bruckner Expressway from between Logan/Crosby avenues and East Tremont Avenue. Revere and Hollywood avenues are also being considered.
The decking proposal has been before Community Board 10 in recent years and is presently being championed by the Waterbury-LaSalle Community Association, which recently joined CB 10 board members at a meeting with Congressman Joseph Crowley to discuss the matter.
The idea would be to cover over part of the expressway to create more parking for the shopping area that is part of the newly forming Throggs Neck Business Improvement District (along the East Tremont Avenue and Bruckner Boulevard), said John Marano, former CB 10 chairman and current board member.
“We cannot just keep building and building and not have appropriate parking and infrastructure,” said Marano. “Yes it will cost money, but will it cost less money now than ten or 15 years from now.”
The push to get the decking project started when Marano was CB 10 chairman.
The reasons for supporting the decking idea include the revival of the Bruckner Boulevard commercial strip, safety and the movement of traffic near an expanding P.S. 14, additional parking for businesses and revenue from parking meters for the city, said Marano.
He hopes to have a trolley that could carry shoppers from the parking lot to businesses along East Tremont Avenue.
Marano and CB 10 members met with NYS Department of Transportation in the fall, he said.
Additionally, in November, members of the WLCA, Marano and Matt Cruz, CB 10 district manager met with Crowley and discussed the matter.
Cruz said that the congressman was receptive to the idea and certainly would look to assist the community on the idea going forward.
“The state would have to do a study and if it is feasible they could question the federal government as to funds that might be available,” said Cruz.
Crowley said in a statement that the proposal would do “much to improve our communities and neighborhoods.”
“This is a state issue and I’ve contacted the NYS Department of Transportation to push for a study to examine the feasibility of funding this project,” stated Crowley.
Andrew Chirico, WLCA board member, said that the decking would facilitate movement of fire trucks in and out of Engine 89/Ladder 50, which is located in the proposed decking area.
Currently the fire trucks must in many cases circle around the expressway to go on runs, he said.
“There is interest, now we got to build some support and see if it goes any further,” said Chirico.