Briarwood asks city to fix windows, trash

Briarwood residents (l. to r.) Andrea Veras, Stephanie Coker, Patricia Brierre and Silia Goldsen complain about trash and broken car windows along Main Street. Photo by Christina Santucci
By Anna Gustafson

Briarwood residents have asked the city to address an increasing number of broken windows on a street they said already has a significant trash problem.

About 85 people signed a petition given to City Councilman Jim Gennaro (D-Fresh Meadows) last week asking the legislator to help find a solution for the area situated on Main Street between 84th Road and Manton Street.

“There is a lot of garbage, and it’s bringing a lot of problems to the neighborhood,” Andrea Veras, of Briarwood, said before giving the petition to Gennaro at the Oct. 13 Community Board 8 meeting. “People are breaking car windows. In less than two weeks we’ve had 10 car windows broken. We’re asking you to please speak with the [city] Department of Sanitation and the police to solve this problem.”

Another two cars had windows broken last weekend as well, according to Veras.

Gennaro said his office immediately began working on the problem upon receiving the petition, and he has reached out to city officials as well as the Doe Fund to remedy the situation. The Doe Fund works with 700 men in the city who have been homeless and helps them to gain employment.

Gennaro recently secured $82,500 to hire formerly homeless men to clean Briarwood streets. He has also worked with the Doe Fund to provide workers to clean streets in Kew Gardens Hills.

“I’m working with the Department of Sanitation and the Doe Fund to get this area cleaned on a regular basis,” Gennaro said, referring to that section of Main Street.

Veras said many residents pass through the area to get to the subway station at Queens Boulevard and Main, where many people will dump trash.

“It’s a very active block because it’s used for residents going to the subway station, and people are continuously walking there,” Veras said. “People dump or drop a lot of garbage there, and people from Sanitation say they won’t pick it up because they don’t pick up loose garbage.”

While the trash has been a problem on the street for years, Veras said the broken windows have only become a severe problem as of late. She said it got particularly bad after she distributed fliers around the neighborhood asking people to attend the CB 8 meeting.

“Maybe the person got upset or angry and was saying, ‘OK, try to catch me,’” Veras said.

Veras added she would like to see additional police patrolling the area and security cameras installed.

CB 8 District Manager Marie Adam-Ovide said she also has urged city officials to address Briarwood residents’ concerns.

“Letters went out to the NYPD and Department of Sanitation from us,” she said. “The NYPD plans to drive by the area, and the Department of Sanitation will address the issue too.”

Reach reporter Anna Gustafson by e-mail at agustafson@cnglocal.com or by phone at 718-260-4574.

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