Drop off and dismissal isn’t as safe as it used to be at P.S. 146 in Howard Beach, Queens.
The sidewalk near the school’s main entrance on 99th Street has been seriously damaged, with pieces of the pathway missing or cracked, according to school officials. While some parts of the sidewalks have been replaced, much of it been left untouched, making it hazardous for pedestrians.
In response to the rising number of unresolved complaints, Assemblyman Phil Goldfeder is demanding that something be done.
“Our families should not have to wait years to see repairs as simple as replacing the cracked sidewalks at P.S. 143,” Goldfeder said. “I urge the city to make immediate repairs to give parents some well-deserved peace of mind and again make the school a point of pride for the entire community.”
Goldfeder sent letters to the School Construction Authority (SCA) and the Parks Department urging both agencies accept responsibility for the damaged sidewalks and fix them. Goldfeder reported large slabs of broken concrete around the school that created a potential trip hazard for parents and students during drop-off and dismissal time. A majority of the damaged sidewalks are located around numerous pits created by the Parks Dept. when they removed trees, according to Goldfeder.
Broken sidewalks are not the only problems plaguing the Howard Beach school. P.S. 146 suffered extensive damage during Superstorm Sandy and as a result took hits to its heating and electrical infrastructure. Currently, P.S. 146 is receiving FEMA funds for repairs.
“For all the progress we’ve made after Sandy, we will not be whole until we can address these infrastructure issues that still plague P.S. 146,” Goldfeder said.
For some parents, the issues go beyond safety into pride. Sally Ann Sinisgalli, president of the P.S. 146 PTA, said the situation is embarrassing.
“There’s chunks of asphalt, patchwork and holes everywhere. It’s embarrassing to have your school with such poor infrastructure around it. It’s really an eyesore,” Sinisgalli said.