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Astoria Has a Pothole Problem–and Constantinides Seeks a Fix

March 3, 2014 By Michael Florio

Potholes have been terrorizing drivers in Astoria this winter—and councilman Costa Constantinides has been hearing about it.

Constantinides office has received more complaints about potholes– from both drivers and pedestrians—than any other issue since taking office on January 2.

Furthermore, the biggest problem area happens to be at the intersection of 31st Street and Astoria Blvd, according to his staff.

“It is ridden with potholes all the time,” said a spokeswoman for Constantinides.

The councilman, in an interview last Thursday, said he aims to rid the streets of them as quickly as possible and ease people’s minds that they will be taken care of them.

He has introduced a bill, No. 53, which would require any reported pothole to be filled within five days or less.

“I want residents to have peace of mind. When they call 311 and report a pothole they should know that within five days it’s going to be gone,” he said.

The Department of Transportation (DOT), which keeps records, reported that in 2013, 241,572 potholes were filled. On average a pothole was filled in 1.4 days.

However, that time period is not always reflective of what some drivers have to deal with, according to Constantinides.

“This is just an average time, we do not have a range so we don’t know how long all potholes are taking,” his spokeswoman said.

According to the DOT a pothole is defined as “A hole in the street with a circular or ovular shape and a definable bottom… The pothole must be one foot in diameter and three inches deep to be considered ‘actionable’.”

“I just want to set a floor,” said Constantinides, as to the bill. “I’m not saying it can’t be done quicker, but no one should ever feel that a pothole will go on forever.”

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