Adam Warner

Flushing Is a Cauldron of Frustration Amid Sidewalk-widening and Sinkhole Work

Downtown Flushing — already teeming with people and vehicles on sidewalks and streets — has become all the more chaotic amid simultaneous work on sidewalks and a sinkhole.

“It’s crazy,” said Mohammad Rahimi.

Two major construction projects are happening in the vicinity of Main Street and Kissena Boulevard. Nearly two dozen bus lines roll through the bustling area.

“It’s very bad, too much clutter over here,” said Rob Ramirez. “Horrible, horrible. Come on, man.”

The city is making emergency sewer repairs to fix the sinkhole. The DEP showed up last week, and with no notice, brought a backhoe and jackhammer to fix the mess. The result: absolute gridlock.

Flushing Councilman Peter Koo said he called the commissioner of the city’s Department of Environmental Protection. That call, and others, convinced the DEP to switch gears within 24 hours. Now the repair work is being done overnight when streets are less busy.

Amid the effort to fix the sinkhole, crews are working on widening the area’s sidewalks. The result has been a dizzying mishmash of bodies, vehicles, signs, detours and construction cones.

Longtime Flushing resident Alice Rodriguez says the bus lines in the area have become all the more confusing now that some of the stops have been moved.

“You are standing here in front of McDonald’s expecting a bus to come. But it’s a block and a half further up,” Rodriguez said.

The sewer work should be done by Aug. 11, while the sidewalk work will take a bit longer. Councilman Koo says that the big takeaway from the mess is that communication needs to improve.

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