Missing Details Prevent CB Vote for Bay Ridge Summer Streets, for Now

Neighbors gather on Fulton Street to watch a fashion show at a Summer Streets event last year. Photo: NYC DOT

The traffic and transportation committee of Brooklyn CB 10 endorsed the concept of a weekend street closure along Bay Ridge’s Third Avenue Wednesday night, but due to a large number of unknowns, they held off on voting for the actual proposal. The elected officials supporting the Bay Ridge Summer Streets plan — State Senator Marty Golden and City Council Member Vincent Gentile — are now working to find answers to the community board’s questions in time for the full board to vote on the plan.

The decision came after a lengthy discussion of the merits of bringing Weekend Walks, DOT’s program to turn city streets into car-free community gathering places on summer weekends, to Bay Ridge. “They generally supported the concept, but they felt that there were a number of issues that were not complete,” said district manager Josephine Beckmann. “It’s new to us, so we have a lot of questions.”

The board’s unanswered questions included where a Third Avenue bus would be rerouted, how to provide programming for the closed street, such as fitness events or local art exhibits, and what time the street would have to be closed for events to start taking place by 6:00 p.m.

Some of the confusion was due to the fact that no representatives from the city were on hand to answer the more technical questions. Golden has pushed hard for the Summer Streets plan on economic development grounds, but isn’t the person to explain the nitty-gritty of implementation.

“Hopefully all of these answers can be provided,” said Beckmann. If a more concrete plan is in place by CB 10’s full board meeting on June 20, she said, the board could reconsider then.