By Madina Toure
Elected officials commended the city Department of Transportation for starting its project to resurface parts of Main Street in Flushing, saying that it will provide smoother streets for residents.
The DOT began resurfacing key portions of Main Street from Northern Boulevard to 38th Avenue, and from 41st Avenue to Elder Avenue, Monday night. The work will last about two weeks, going from 9 p.m. to 5 a.m. Monday to Friday.
Resurfacing involves putting an asphalt overlay—a second layer of asphalt over existing asphalt—on a roadway.
City Councilman Peter Koo (D-Flushing) allocated $300,000 for additional reconstruction at the intersection of Main Street and Roosevelt Avenue, which will start in spring 2016.
“For years, commuters and pedestrians in Flushing have endured a road surface more akin to the surface of the moon than one suited to one of the busiest thoroughfares in the city,” Koo said.
Queens Borough President Melinda Katz said businesses and residents appreciate the DOT’s efforts in accelerating what she called a “much-needed” project.
“We ask drivers to take extra care and patience around the work zones during this brief yet critical maintenance period so that the city may pave a smoother ride,” Katz said.
Overnight work will enable the agency to minimize the effects on traffic and all street uses along the corridor.
Traffic will be maintained in both directions the first week and rerouted during the second week of work, with expected delays in the work zone areas. All work is dependent on the weather.
As of Friday, the DOT had resurfaced 203 lane miles in the borough and 694 miles citywide this year.
The project addresses nearly four lane miles along the corridor, according to DOT Queens Borough Commissioner Nicole Garcia.
“We are excited to kick off the much-awaited resurfacing project along Main Street to provide smoother streets for businesses, residents and visitors alike,” Garcia said.
She added that the agency plans to to do more paving along Main Street and throughout Flushing in the future.
Koo and the Downtown Flushing Transit Hub Business Improvement District, or Flushing BID, distributed fact sheets to Main Street businesses regarding the road repair in English, Chinese, Korean, Hindi and Gujarati Monday afternoon.
The fact sheets include information for businesses about the impact of the project, including parking restrictions, construction boundaries and contact information.
State Sen. Toby Stavisky (D-Flushing) said the project will improve travel conditions for pedestrians and drivers and yield a “better commercial district.”
“It is only a block and a half from my district office and I have experienced firsthand the potholes and unevenness of Main Street and the adjacent roadways,” Stavisky said.
Reach reporter Madina Toure by e-mail at mtour