Eyes on the Street: Filling the Void Left By Astoria’s Missing Plaza

A Key Food delivery truck in Astoria blocks the crosswalk and a fire hydrant, forcing pedestrians into Newtown Avenue. Photo: Todd Schultz

Last month, Queens Community Board 1 voted down DOT’s proposal for a pedestrian plaza at the intersection of 30th Avenue, 33rd Street and Newtown Avenue, opting instead for curb extensions that will keep the block open to vehicle traffic.

The curb extensions are set to be installed next year. In the meantime, as shown in this photo sent in by reader Todd Schultz, trucks unloading at the Key Food on Newtown Avenue are parking illegally in the crosswalk, endangering pedestrians crossing the intersection.

At the CB 1 meeting, Thomas Anderson of Key Food spoke against the plaza, saying it would “eliminate convenient access to our store” and “potentially threaten our viability,” despite a DOT survey of the store’s shoppers showing that 90 percent arrive on foot or by transit.