City completes $80 million infrastructure projects in Bayside, Auburndale and Flushing

Streets, curbs, sidewalks and ADA pedestrian ramps were rebuilt throughout the project area. (Photo courtesy of the city Department of Design and Construction)

The city has completed an $80 million infrastructure project that has rebuilt roads, brought more reliable drinking water service and improved draining and street conditions to the neighborhoods of Bayside, Auburndale and Flushing.  

The project, which began in September 2017, was managed by the city Department of Design and Construction (DDC) and funded largely by the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) and Department of Transportation (DOT).  

DDC Commissioner Thomas Foley (center), the DDC project team, consultants and contractors celebrate the completion of the $79.7 million project that rebuilt 3.5 miles of streets along 33rd, 37th and 38th avenues. (Courtesy of DDC)

“This $80 million investment means safer streets, more reliable tap water delivery and less street flooding in Bayside, Auburndale and Flushing,” DEP Commissioner Rohit Aggarwala said. “DEP has the largest capital budget in our history and we are working closely with our partners at DDC and DOT to ensure similar upgrades are brought to communities across all five boroughs.”

The project, stretching from 156th Street on the west end to 216th Street at the east, replaced over five miles (26,815 feet) of older distribution water mains with new pipes ranging from 8 inches to 24 inches in diameter. More than two miles of new trunk water mains were also added to the neighborhoods, which included 5,775 feet of 72-inch mains and 8,295 feet of 48-inch mains. Fire protection was enhanced with the replacement of 89 old fire hydrants and installation of 17 new fire hydrants. 

The $79.7 million infrastructure project extends more than 3.5 miles on 33rd, 37th and 38th avenues in Bayside, Auburndale and Flushing. (Courtesy of DDC)

In addition to water mains, nearly two miles (9,985 feet) of storm, sanitary and combined sewers were replaced and 23 new catch basins were added in the project area to improve stormwater drainage. As part of the final street restoration, 19,210 feet of new curbs were added to the project area and 8,200 feet of old curbs, 432,000 square feet of asphalt and 82,800 square feet of concrete sidewalks were replaced.

To span the Clearview Expressway, the project used micro-tunneling techniques to build three small new tunnels for water, sewer and private utilities under the highway from east to west at 38th Avenue. The project was designed by DDC’s in-house design team. Construction was completed by C.A.C. Industries Inc., and engineering services were provided by Entech Mirabal Engineers, PLLC. 

At the intersection of 33rd Avenue and 158th Street, a new 72-inch water main connects to a new 48-inch water main. A new sewer chamber and 20-inch sewer regulator were also installed. (Courtesy of DDC)

“This project, which was designed and executed by DDC’s professional infrastructure team, extends across a large part of the borough and has improved water service reliability and street conditions for tens of thousands of Queens residents,” DDC Commissioner Thomas Foley said. “Along with our partners at DEP and DOT, we are investing billions of dollars in long-term improvements to Queens infrastructure.”

DOT Commissioner Ydanis Rodriguez said the agency is proud to have contributed funding to these critical infrastructure improvements in the communities. 

“Thousands of Queens residents will benefit from improved sidewalks and pedestrian ramps as a result of this funding and we thank Mayor Adams and our sister agencies for their dedication to this vital project,” Rodriguez said. 

Northeast Queens lawmakers welcomed the news of the completed long-awaited infrastructure upgrade project. 

“I’m thrilled to hear that this crucial project is finally completed, and I am even more excited for the positive impact it will have on my constituents in the area,” Councilwoman Vickie Paladino said. “These upgrades will drastically improve the quality of life for residents of Bayside, Auburndale and Flushing by supplying better drinking water AND improving drainage and street conditions. This is a huge win and I want to thank the residents local to this project for their continued patience throughout. We have finally reached our goal and I hope you will all join me in celebrating the completion and thanking the city agencies who made it happen for us.”

As flooding has gotten progressively worse in northeast Queens, Senator John Liu said he’s pleased that the city has finally arrived at the conclusion of the long-awaited infrastructure upgrade. 

“Climate change demands immediate and sustained action, and this project will provide much-needed improvements to our drinking water, sewer and storm drainage and street conditions. This is a great first step to providing some relief to our community, so we thank the DEP, DOT and DDC for working together to get this job done,” Liu said. 

Assemblyman Ed Braunstein said the upgrades “will serve to help relieve local flooding issues and provide more reliable water service to residents in Bayside, Auburndale and Flushing.”

Queens Borough President Donovan Richards Jr. said the newly completed project is an important investment in the borough’s future that will improve the quality-of-life of so many residents. 

“The project underscores the city’s strong commitment to improving street safety, increasing the reliability of tap water delivery, and reducing street flooding in Bayside, Auburndale and Flushing. I commend the Department of Environmental Protection, the Department of Design and Construction and the Department of Transportation for working together so effectively to address many of our significant infrastructure needs here in Queens,” Richards said.