Standing Water in Chinatown Threatens Economy, Officials Claim

Friday, September 23, 2011

Standing water at curbsides is harming the quality of life and economy of Chinatown, community leaders claimed Friday.

State Senator Daniel Squadron released a study that says the neighborhood is particularly susceptible to "ponding" — when puddles fail to drain within 48 hours after rain. His office found nearly 100 such puddles during one of the driest Julys on record.

Virginia Kee, founder of the Chinese-American Planning Council, said the standing water creates a hazard for residents and hurts the neighborhood's reputation among visitors.

"When people say, 'Oh, Chinatown smells. It is dirty. It is this. It is that,' they do not realize that, for years and years, we have asked to have this problem solved," she said.

Squadron is calling on the city's Department of Transportation to create a specific 3-1-1 category for ponding so service requests and repairs can be tracked the way they are for potholes.

City officials say calls to 311 about “ponding” are addressed, usually by the city's Department of Environmental Protection, though they are referred to the DOT when there's damage to streets.


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Comments [1]

Geoff Lee from Chinatown

This is so true - lose the standing water and you lose the smell - then we can lose the awful Chinatown BID which portends double taxing for services already rendered. This is what Chinatown really needs INSTEAD of the bloated and top-heavy Chinatown BID - Chinatown needs education to small businesses and property owners, better enforcement of already existing street hygiene laws, and the City taking care of itself, in this case - eliminating ponding through 311 services. Kudos to Ms. Virginia Kee and Daniel Squadron for suggesting and supporting these worthwhile services that cost the Chinatown community virtually nothing. Chinatown does not want and does not need a B.I.D. - that's why the Chinatown BID has a record high number of verified objections filed against it!!!

Sep. 23 2011 10:12 PM

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