March 11, 2014 By Michael Florio
Western Queens has had its fair share of pedestrian deaths in the past 12 months so a number of elected officials have decided to host a town hall meeting focusing on pedestrian safety.
The list of pedestrian fatalities and injuries is long—from Noshat Nahian, who died crossing Northern Boulevard on his way to elementary school in Woodside in December, to last weekend’s tragic death of a Kumar Ragunath, who was killed in a hit and run last Friday night in Long Island City.
This event is being organized by Congressman Joe Crowley and is scheduled for Wednesday, March 19, at the Bohemian Hall at 7 pm. Councilman Costa Constantinides, State Senator Mike Gianaris and Assemblywoman Aravella Simotas will be attending.
“As elected officials, it is our responsibility to ensure safety for all pedestrians, especially the many senior citizens and young families who live here in Astoria,” Simotas said.
“This is an opportunity for the community to come together and identify broader solutions and strategies that will help make our streets safer,” she said.
While Astoria has largely gone unscathed in terms of pedestrian deaths, Constantinides wants to make people more aware of the problem in Western Queens, his spokeswoman said.
Meanwhile, in Astoria, Constantinides’ spokeswoman said that pedestrians—particularly senior citizens—often call and complain about dangerous drivers along or near 21st street.
“Pedestrian safety is on every New Yorker’s mind these days, and for good reason. Traffic fatalities, particularly involving children, have become all too common,” said State Sen. Mike Gianaris, whose district covers Astoria, Sunnyside, Woodside and Long Island City.
“In order to make our streets safer, it is vital that elected officials and government agencies work together, and I believe this town hall will help us do so,” Gianaris said.
Representatives from Community Board One and the 114th police precinct will also be in attendance.
Wednesday, March 19
7:00 – 9:00 pm
29-19 24th Avenue
Astoria, New York 11102
RSVP by calling 718-274-4500 or 718-779-1400