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Earlier this month, the Department of Transportation (DOT) informed Councilman Paul Vallone that long-awaited traffic changes in Whitestone would be implemented by the end of June. 

Vallone had requested one-way conversions at 17th Avenue, 17th Road and 157th Street in Whitestone that surround JHS 194 and Saint Luke’s School, where traffic flow and safety has been a cause of concern for the surrounding community for a number of years. 

After hearing from community members who expressed their concerns about traffic and safety at the location, Vallone subsequently asked for a traffic study to be conducted by the DOT. As a result, the DOT and Community Board 7 approved the new street configurations. 

“The safety of our children always comes first, and these traffic flow changes will serve to improve pick-up and drop-off conditions for our students, parents, and teachers,” Vallone said. “These traffic changes are a win for the Whitestone community members who have long requested improved street safety at this location.”

DOT Queens Borough Commissioner Nicole Garcia thanked Vallone, Community Board 7, and all of the local residents who worked tirelessly to advocate for the changes to enhance safety and the quality of life for Whitestone families. 

“These new one-way changes will eliminate the conflicts of vehicles narrowly passing each other, and will help create safer streets for pedestrians and motorists, all while simplifying pickups and drop-offs in front of Junior High School 194 and Saint Luke’s School,” Garcia said. 

Jennifer Miller, principal of JHS 194, said the street conversion to a one-way is welcome news for the school community who has advocated for the change since 2016. 

“Thank you to everyone who has supported these efforts, including, Ms. Slattery, JHS 194’s past and present SLT and PTA, Council Member Vallone, the DOT, and our entire JHS 194 school family and its surrounding community,” Miller said. 

Construction to a new one-way conversion is scheduled to take place on the following dates:

  • Tuesday, June 23: 17th Avenue between 150th Street and Francis Lewis Boulevard, from two-way to one-way eastbound
  • Tuesday, June 23: 157th Street between 16th Road and 17th Road, from two-way to one-way southbound
  • Wednesday, June 24: 17th Road between 157th Street and 150th Street, from two-way to one-way westbound

Parking will be preserved on both sides of the impacted streets. Community members parked in the area will be asked to please turn their vehicles to face the new direction of traffic. For questions, residents may contact the Queens Borough Commissioner’s Office at 212-839-2510.

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