July 31, 2009

Gillibrand Announces Key Senate Panel $600,000 To Revamp Queens Transportation Hub

Federal Dollars Will Provide Safety Boost, Improved Traffic Flow to Jamaica Station

Washington, DC - U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand announced that late yesterday the Senate Appropriations Committee approved $600,000 in the FY10 Transportation, Housing and Urban Development Appropriations Bill to renovate Jamaica Station in Queens in an effort to make the transportation hub safer and more pedestrian-friendly. Senator Gillibrand aggressively lobbied members of the Appropriations Committee to include funding for the project in this year's spending bill.

"As a mother and a lawmaker, the safety of our communities is a top priority of mine," said Senator Gillibrand. "This federal investment in the infrastructure of this bustling transportation hub will provide safer access to the roads, pedestrian plazas, trains and subways for driver and pedestrians alike."

The Greater Jamaica Development Corporation (GJDC), one of New York's oldest non-profit development corporations, will use the new federal funding to renovate Jamaica Station's intersection between Archer Avenue and Sutphin Boulevard - a dangerous area prone to pedestrian accidents. Each day, approximately 18,000 people traffic through this key hub that provides AirTran light rail service to John F. Kennedy Airport, four subway lines, the Long Island Rail Road and multiple regional bus lines.

The GJDC will use the $600,000 to create wider turning radius for buses, expanded sidewalks, pedestrian plazas, improved subway exits, new streets signs and lighting, and convenient retail stores for transit users.

Late yesterday, the Appropriations Bill for Transportation, Housing and Urban Development passed the full committee. The legislation will now head to the floor for a vote before the full Senate. The bill will then proceed to the House-Senate Conference Committee, before final passage in both chambers, and sent to the President to become law.