Hobnobbing clears Glen Oaks Vill. snowy roads

A Fire Department SUV gets stuck in Glen Oaks during the blizzard. Photo courtesy Bob Friedrich
By Howard Koplowitz

The streets of Glen Oaks Village had not been plowed by the time the co-op’s president, Bob Friedrich, attended outgoing state Sen. Frank Padavan’s (R-Bellerose) farewell party Dec. 29 — the Wednesday following the blizzard.

But six hours later, the mission was accomplished after Friedrich was able to get Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s ear during the event at Leonard’s of Great Neck, telling him that the co-op’s streets had not seen a plow since the snowstorm began Sunday morning.

“If it were not for the Padavan’s farewell event, I would not have had the opportunity to meet the mayor and get the streets plowed,” Friedrich said in a phone interview last Thursday. “Even on his way out, Sen. Frank Padavan is the state senator that keeps on giving.”

Friedrich said he introduced himself as the president of Glen Oaks Village to Bloomberg, who turned to Sophie Graham, the mayor’s director of advanced operations, and said, “Tell [city Sanitation Commissioner John] Doherty to send plows there tonight.”

The Glen Oaks Village president met the mayor around 8 p.m. last Wednesday. An e-mail message was sent to Friedrich at 8:30 p.m., asking him to give streets that needed to be plowed.

By the time Friedrich got home at 11 p.m., he noticed the message and responded, he said.

Early Thursday morning, while doing work, Friedrich heard “a small army of Sanitation plows” going through Glen Oaks Village’s streets at 2:37 a.m., he said.

“They plowed the streets and they also salted them, so we were happy,” Friedrich said.

While Friedrich praised Bloomberg, he said it should not have come to the point where he needed to talk to the mayor in order for Glen Oaks Village streets to be plowed.

“This really is not the way it should be,” he said. “This should’ve been done days ago, but at least [Bloomberg] was responsive when he was asked to do it. The city just needs to do a better job at getting the plows out.”

While Friedrich said he did not review the co-op’s emergency reports, he said a Long Island Jewish Medical Center ambulance on one of Glen Oaks Village’s streets had to be pulled out of the storm Monday by an LIJ SUV with chains.

“We got it plowed, we accomplished what we wanted to accomplish and we got the job done,” Friedrich said.

Reach reporter Howard Koplowitz by e-mail at hkoplowitz@cnglocal.com or by phone at 718-260-4573.

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