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Who’s on Third?

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A civic panel shot down a bid to turn Third Avenue between 82nd and 92nd Streets into a pedestrian mall for six evenings this summer, saying the proposal was misguided because it didn’t take into account the problems with traffic, litter and noise it would create.

Nearly 200 people showed up at Community Board 10’s Traffic and Transportation committee meeting at St. Anselm’s Church on Wednesday — a startling number considering most committee meetings don’t attract more than a dozen people — and many said the plan being pushed by state Sen. Marty Golden and Councilman Vincent Gentile to close the strip to cars between 6 and 10 pm in late July and early August is going to create havoc.

“It’s gonna be crazy; it’s gonna be insane,” said Gerry Morris, who owns Chadwick’s Restaurant on Third Avenue between 88th and 89th streets. “I’d rather shoot myself in the foot than see this happen.”

Several residents worry about losing parking spaces within the plaza — which they think will increase double-parking on side streets.

As a result, CB10’s six-member panel voted unanimously to send the plan back to the drawing board until its sponsors can address the problems it foresees.

“The devil’s in the details, and there are no details,” said Kevin Peter Carroll, member of the traffic and transportation committee and Democratic district leader for the 60th assembly district.

But Golden and Gentile — as well as other speakers at the hearing — say the plan will empower pedestrians in an otherwise car-centered neighborhood and be a boon to a local economy that flags in the late summer.

“People are afraid of change. Move forward. Keep your cars at home,” yelled Susan Michalski at the plans detractors. “Shame on you people!”

And Golden said that, at the very least, the plan could help create a sense of community on the block.

“It’s something different; it will create a buzz,” he said after the meeting. “[Businesses] will start to expand and stay open late at night.”

And just because the plan was rejected, it doesn’t mean it’s dead.

“It’s up to the electeds to see if they can get the plan together by next week,” said CB10 member Bob Hudoch, who added the plan could be passed by the full board during its meeting on June 20.

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Reader Feedback

Jason from Bay Ridge says:
YEAH WOOOO MORE CARS. I LOVE CARS.

Nope....just another group of misguided idiots running a Community Board.
June 14, 2011, 12:40 am
Arlen from Bay Ridge says:
I wonder if Linda Setlech has ever gotten so agitated and worked up over pollution, car accidents, and the startling number of seniors injured by cars in her neighborhood.

Shame on her.
June 14, 2011, 8:48 am
Ahab from Bay Rij says:
God get me out of this hellhole.
June 14, 2011, 9:36 am
Marty from Golden State says:
Is Setlech singing the national anthem???
June 14, 2011, 10:16 am
Joe from Crown Heights says:
The people opposed to this plan should take a long hard look at how much buzz and media attention this proposal is getting, just in its being voted down. These events draw foot traffic and press. Suddenly it's not just a normal weekend, but it's an event - it's something TO DO that shows up in calendars and newsletters. But if foot traffic and media attention isn't what people want for their commercial district - hey, it's their funeral. There are like 20 of these happening around the city now year after year so the prophesied garbage and traffic armageddon that the Linda Setleches of the world get all worked up about, but never come to bear, are starting be tired arguments. The CB should be more concerned about getting opinions from other neighborhoods that have had successful similar events, than classic local NIMBYs like vocal "Ground Zero Mosque" oppositionist Linda Setlech.
June 14, 2011, 10:30 am
Wayne from Bay Ridge says:
Another nail in the coffin to the reign of DOT Diktator Sadik-Khan. The People of Brooklyn have spoken!
June 14, 2011, 10:34 am
Tony Soprano from Bay Ridge says:
Stay da efff outta my neighborhood, hipsters, and all youse bike nazis. I better have a spot for my Escalade or someones getting capped.
June 14, 2011, 11:58 am
Jason Bay from Bay Ridge says:
Are the people who oppose this proposal aware of how successful the initiative has been in other neighborhoods? I ask to better calculate how Narrows-minded they are. (Yeah, pun intended.)
June 14, 2011, 1:58 pm
ty from pps says:
Hmm... how long do we have to wait for Tal's baseless argument on this topic? Cue anecdotes and made up "facts" from the guy in Pleasantville, NY.
June 14, 2011, 3 pm
Bay Ridge says:
'Are the people who oppose this proposal aware of how successful the initiative has been in other neighborhoods?
= Jason @ 1:58

Where? Times Square?
Bay Ridge ain't Times Square, hipster newbie!
June 14, 2011, 3:42 pm
The corrector from Brooklyn says:
Bay Ridge, I think he means Vanderbilt Avenue, or Bedford or the other places it has happened, but you aren't one for rational posts, I imagine.
June 14, 2011, 5:18 pm
Tony Soprano from Bay Ridge says:
Hey Jason Bay, you better stay away from me, cuz unlike you, I don't miss when I swing my bat.
June 14, 2011, 5:25 pm
Simon from American Idle says:
Setlech's got SOME pipes. Her rendition of God Bless America was the most moving thing I've experienced since the bowl of All Bran I ate this morning.
June 14, 2011, 6:27 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
The people of Bay Ridge have spoken and even though the majority of them are in favor of closing the streets for these Friday nights we must listen to the minority of people who feel oppressed by pedestrians walking all over the street with no regard for motorists' safety putting children's lives at risk by this thougtless policy. Mayor Bloomberg may want to hurt business by this program but Bay Ridgites are not falling for it and won't sit down on the street for food and music like the do in Times Square every night, even though Times Square is not in Brooklyn.
June 14, 2011, 8:09 pm
Jason Bay from Bay Ridge says:
No, Bay Ridge @ 3:42, I wasn't thinking Times Square; I was thinking more along the lines of Myrtle Avenue.

Tony, you don't worry me. I'll be goin' back to the American League soon anyway.
June 15, 2011, 12:30 pm
Pat Barscz from Bay Ridge says:
Even though I no longer live in Brooklyn, I still consider it and Bay Ridge my home town. I live in Pittsfield MA and what we do from April through October, is have one night a month, we call it Third Thursday, and close off North Street and both stores, local artists, farmer's market and resturants display their wares and food. Local bands play and we have activities for children. The event runs from 5PM-8PM with many resturants benefiting fron the crowds after the street is reopened. This month is Theme is GO GREEN. Give this idea some thought
June 16, 2011, 10:40 am
Bay Ridge Boulevardier from About Town says:
It's all slip slidin' away.

Soon good old Bay Ridge will be like every other quiche for breakfast, lunch and dinner takeout nabe in Brooklyn. Isn't Smith Street wonderful almost like West Broadway and Vanderbilt is so upper West Side, but so reasonable....
June 17, 2011, 10:05 pm

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