Van Bramer sets out to fight pigeon waste on subway line

Van Bramer sets out to fight pigeon waste on subway line
Photo courtesy Jimmy Van Bramer
By Roz Liston

City Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer (D-Sunnyside) has declared war on the pigeons that have been leaving their droppings at three stops on the No. 7 line between 46th and 61st streets.

Straphangers using these stations have confronted the pigeon poop problem for decades.

Van Bramer announced the installation of a so-called pigeon mitigation systems, which should protect riders passing through these stations from being hit by droppings.

“Pigeon poop isn’t a joke,” Van Bramer said last week at a news conference in the blighted area, where the droppings have defaced the interior of the stations and the entrances. “It makes our neighborhood look unattractive and it is also a health hazard.”

The stations fighting the problem are the 46th Street-Bliss Street, 52nd Street-Lincoln Avenue and the 61st Street-Woodside stops, the latter of which connects with the Long Island Rail Road.

The new $250,000 systems have several features to deter the pigeons, which perch on top of the stations and often fly around inside before landing high up in the metal beams:

• add new wiring and netting around station entrances

• install nylon spikes and angled edges to ledges

• install ultrasonic devices to emit hawk sounds to deter the pigeons, which cannot be heard by the human ear