De Blasio announces new school, upgrades at Jackson Heights town hall meeting

Photo courtesy of New York City Mayoral Photography Office

Mayor Bill de Blasio hosted his 52nd town hall meeting on March 28 where he announced new construction projects, additional services and answered questions from Jackson Heights residents.

Among the new projects announced at the town hall at I.S. 145, which was co-hosted by Councilman Daniel Dromm, was a new 476-seat middle school scheduled to open in Sept. 2020. Officials broke ground on P.S. 398 last June.

The five-story, 65,000-square-foot building will include a rooftop garden, art and music classrooms, a library and more. School District 30, which encompasses Astoria, East Elmhurst, Jackson Heights, Long Island City, Sunnyside and Woodside, is one of the most overcrowded school districts in the city.

“This is a community where there’s a real need for new school space,” the mayor said. 

P.S. 69, which is located at 77-02 37th Ave., has had roof issues and residents have asked for speedier repairs.

“There’s been a concern about the roof and a desire to speed up repair of the roof,” he said. “I want to show you government in action. The repairs will begin next week and will be done by the end of April.”

De Blasio also announced that the upgraded Travers Park 76-9 34th Ave. will open in Sept. 19 and that design work has been completed for an upgraded Jackson Heights library. Nearly $11 million has been allocated to improve the library.

The grand opening of the new, permanent Diversity Plaza will take place this July and $30 million will be poured into Elmhurst Hospital’s emergency department. The hospital’s trauma center is the eighth busiest trauma center in the country, he said.

Residents have also called for additional garbage pickups along busy thoroughfares in Jackson Heights. The Department of Sanitation began making an extra Friday pickup at 37th and Roosevelt Avenues and garbage pickup along Broadway has increased from five days a week to seven days a week.

By this November, the Department of Transportation will install additional lighting underneath the elevated 7 line from 71st through 81st streets along Roosevelt Avenue, he said.

De Blasio also announced that after safety concerns were voiced, a new traffic agent will be placed at the intersection of 73rd Street and 37th Avenue.

Watch the full town hall below:

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