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March 2, 2023 | In Recent News

Brooklyn Lawmakers Fight Against Brooklyn-Queens Expressway Plan

Local Politicians Express Displeasure Over State’s Inaction

Eighteen elected officials in Brooklyn have banded together to express their displeasure over the New York State Department of Transportation’s lack of a plan to redesign the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway. New York State DOT has only provided technical assistance to New York City’s DOT for the 1.5-mile section owned by the city between Atlantic Avenue and Sands Streets. The state has no plans to redesign the vast remainder of the aging expressway, which it owns.

Ajlouny Injury Law represents victims of motor vehicle accidents occurring on the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway and other expressways in New York City. We have the necessary resources backed by an experienced legal team that can determine if you have a valid injury claim. If you or a loved one have sustained injuries from mishaps on New York City expressways, contact our office at (718) 808-6409 for your FREE legal consultation.

Crumbling Structure Needs a Long-Term Fix

Road salt and moisture, plus stress from overweight trucks that the roadway was never designed to carry, have weakened the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway’s concrete-and-steel foundation to the point of crumbling. More than six years after New York City sounded the alarm about the roadway, politicians have still not reached a consensus about how to fix it. Constructed in the 1940s, the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway carries over 130,000 vehicles per day, including 13,000 trucks.

Finding a Compatible Solution

The 18 legislators who hold seats in the U.S. Congress, the New York State Legislature and the New York City Council expressed their worries that the state, which owns most of the 20-mile expressway, will not do anything to repair the sections of the heavily-traveled roadway that it owns, thus endangering thousands of motorists and their passengers daily as the expressway continues to deteriorate. Led by State Senator Andrew Gounardes, the legislative group expressed its displeasure that New York State has refused to take any responsibility for the approximately 19 miles of expressway it owns.

Why Legislators are Fighting for Change

The legislative group says that without a definitive plan from the New York DOT, the expressway will only get a redesign on the city-owned portion, leaving traditionally poor communities from Bay Ridge to Greenpoint to suffer from the social, health and economic impacts of the BQE. No extensive renovations can happen on the BQE corridor unless the state comes up with a plan. Currently, New York City can only renovate the roadways around and leading up to the expressway in the areas owned by the state.

New York City’s Plans

New York City Mayor Eric Adams has indicated that he wants the expressway renovation to begin within five years. Fast-tracking the project could allow the city to tap into federal infrastructure funds unlocked by the Biden Administration to help pay for the renovations. The city-owned portion of the expressway includes the crumbling triple cantilever section, deemed the most dangerous area of the BQE. New York City has put forth three different proposals to renovate the expressway, all requiring rerouting lanes in the city’s portion.

Current Impacts on Surrounding Neighborhoods

The statement by Brooklyn lawmakers cites the environmental impacts that the current state of the BQE has on surrounding neighborhoods, with many of these being lower-income and poverty-stricken areas. Frequent expressway closings force trucks to use city streets to reach their destinations, endangering pedestrians and motorists with their unexpected presence.

Injured in a Motor Vehicle Accident?

If you have been injured in an accident in Brooklyn or Queens, or anywhere in New York City, our experienced injury attorneys can help. Contact us today at (718) 233-3913 to schedule your no-obligation consultation.

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