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Astoria Park Area Gets Dedicated Cleanup Initiative

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Oct. 4, 2015 By Jackie Strawbridge

A patchwork of street cleaners and maintenance crews are working in and around Astoria Park as part of an effort to tidy up the wider neighborhood.

The workers are sweeping the sidewalks, emptying the trash and landscaping the park.

Councilman Costa Constantinides announced the new services on Friday, made possible through more than $200,000 in funding from the Councilman’s discretionary funds, the City Council’s NYC Cleanup Initiative and the Parks Equity Initiative.

The DOE Fund, already at work cleaning Steinway Street, 30th Avenue, Ditmars Boulevard and other Astoria corridors, opened a new route on Shore Boulevard in September, the Councilman said.

The “men in blue,” as DOE Fund crews are called, will tackle Shore Boulevard on Friday, Saturday and Sunday weekly into November, and then again in April, May and June of next year.

Through the DOE Fund, formerly homeless and incarcerated individuals receive paid transitional work and educational services, one phase of which is the street cleaning program.

Crews with the Association of Community Employment Programs for the Homeless, which similarly provides job training and work experience, will also landscape sidewalks and weed patches along Hoyt Avenue North leading up to Astoria Park. They will visit twice a month through October and in April, May and June, Constantinides said.

Within the park itself, an additional Parks Department-employed maintenance staffer has been secured, although park-goers will have to wait until spring for his or her arrival.

The new maintenance staffer will be stationed at Astoria Park from April to June 2016, following an allocation of $18,000 through the City’s Parks Equity Initiative.

Martha Lopez-Gilpin, Chair of the Astoria Park Alliance, spoke about the communal effort of keeping the neighborhood clean.

“[These crews] are doing very crucial and vital work. But I call upon all our citizens to step up to support this work,” she said. “Every piece of garbage you throw on the ground doesn’t belong there.”

“We can do better, we have to do better, because we have to support this great work,” she continued.

Alongside the Astoria Park services, Constantinides announced graffiti removal programs from both the Central Astoria Local Development Coalition and the Queens Economic Development Corporation.

The DOE Fund will also expand their route to include 21st Street, including its new pedestrian safety curb extensions.

Reach reporter Jackie Strawbridge at jackie.strawbridge@queenspost.com

email the author: news@queenspost.com

3 Comments

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hmmmmm

Astoria in general is still filthy. you can’t keep pumping money in a program like the DOE Fund and expect results.

It is up to the community and the citizens of Astoria to help keep the area clean.

Keep the jerks accountable who throw their trash everywhere.

It’s such a transient neighborhood now it has become utterly disgusting and overrun with litter and trash. People getting off at the Astoria Blvd N/Q station throw trash everywhere. it is appalling.

instead of writing ridiculous no left turn tickets, cops should be enforcing the over all well being of the neighborhood, which includes fining the pigs who find it necessary to toss their garbage on the streets and sidewalks.

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Anita

This summer, the park looked clean and somewhat manicured until the pool opened up and the festivities took place. Cans, bottles, napkins, plates, etc were scattered all over the park especially by the pool entrance side bench park area…That is the time when clean up crews are needed most! How about posting some signs that deter littering and actually dispensing over filled trash cans throughout the year daily. Astoria Park used to be a beautiful sanctuary and since these congress people and community programs/festivities want to continue to utilize it as publicized and town events they need to come up with better ways of maintaining it!

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Mary

I don’t know what is it with some people and littering but put your trash in the garbage or take it with you …if there is no garbage available ( this includes cigarettes !). And dont leave your trash /coffe cup/bagel bag at the bus stop or the train bench .

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