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Pothole alley! City neglects Marine Park street

Uneven: The city covered the pot holes littering Lotts Lane about two weeks ago but did a poor job, residents say, leaving it uneven and prone to developing the holes again in just a short amount of time.
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This road’s got Lotts of problems!

The city has neglected a Marine Park street for years, and did a shoddy job when it finally fixed the gaping potholes that were filled with water deep enough for little kids to take a dip in, charge residents near Lotts Lane.

“They filled up these potholes that were literally, I would say, a foot deep — when I used to have kids over here, they would go swimming over here, I kid you not,” said one homeowner whose backyard abuts Lotts Lane, and who asked to remain anonymous because his relatives work for the city. “You’re putting a cheap band aid on this, you’re just displacing the water, now the water just rushes all over here.”

The short, unpaved road between Kimball and Coleman streets is not a mapped street meant for traffic, and it lacks a drainage system — but it is owned by the Department of Citywide Administrative Services, so it deserves the same maintenance as any other street, said the Kimball Street resident.

“If they are going to say this a road, we pay our taxes, fix the road,” he said. “It’s just been a big, big headache.”

The Department of Citywide Administrative Services threw down some gravel to fill in the deep potholes at the end of May after residents had been calling the city for months. But contrary to what was promised on a notice hung along the street prior to the work, the city’s hired contractors left the road bumpy and uneven, said a Coleman Street resident, who also asked to remain anonymous.

“They did a horrible job,” he said. “One of the posted signs said they would fill the holes and grade the road. They did not grade the road and they did not fill all of the potholes. It’s pretty pathetic if this is their repairs. As long as they were doing it, they should have done it right. The work they did is going to erode in a short time.”

The Department of Transportation is in the process of identifying and studying all of the city’s unmapped streets with the goal of obtaining them to bring them into the normal maintenance system — and though Lotts Lane is already owned by the city, it is not under the purview of the Department of Transportation, and it’s in a part of the borough that routinely gets overlooked, said another Coleman Street resident.

“It’s just like a forgotten little lane, but it’s important to people on Kimball and Coleman Street,” said Carol Cellana, who is worried the large watering holes will attract disease-infected bugs and mosquitoes as the weather warms. “Everyone’s upset. The holes are so deep, if you try to walk back there you fall. In the summer it’s even worse with tons of mosquitoes.”

Residents would love to see the city pave the street over install a proper drainage system, but right now the focus is on fixing the street so it’s safe for cars and pedestrians, said the local pol.

“It’s been a big concern. What I would like to see now is for the city to really sit down with the community and just figure out what their needs are,” said Councilman Jumaane Williams (D–Marine Park). “They didn’t do a good job, that’s the bottom line. Hopefully we can regroup and do it the way we should have the first time.”

The Department of Citywide Administrative Services said it will monitor the road.

“DCAS fixed the potholes two weeks ago,” said spokeswoman Cathy Hanson. “We will monitor this alleyway to make sure it’s safe for use.”

Reach reporter Julianne Cuba at (718) 260–4577 or by e-mail at jcuba@cnglocal.com. Follow her on Twitter @julcuba.
Updated 11:48 am, January 16, 2019
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