Category Archives: Woodhaven

DA: Ridgewood, Woodhaven men charged with stealing unemployment benefits

Two men from Ridgewood and Woodhaven were among the 18 individuals Queens District Attorney Richard Brown pegged for allegedly stealing more than $340,000 in unemployment benefits, authorities said. Steven Colon, 38, and Alfonso Vaca, 33, were two of those who allegedly received the largest amounts of overpayments in the scheme, which Brown said came as the result of a state Department of Labor investigation involving falsified documents for fast cash. “The defendants are accused of trying to scam the system … Continue reading

Friends of Queensway Present New Design Concepts

The Friends of the QueensWay and the Trust for Public Land rolled out a new series of design concepts in anticipation of the group’s upcoming public workshops in Forest Hills and Richmond Hill. The group announced its second round of community workshops earlier this month as part of the QueensWay feasibility and planning project with hopes of engaging the public in plans to transform an abandoned 3.5-mile stretch of railway into a 47-acre linear park and cultural greenway. A series … Continue reading

Woodhaven Residents to City: Act Before Tragedy Happens

“Mayor de Blasio: Tear down that wall,” Woodhaven civic activist Ed Wendell said, invoking the famous statement from former U.S. President Ronald Reagan as he raised his hand and pointed to a building on Jamaica Avenue that residents, civic leaders and elected officials said poses an immediate danger to the community and, nearly 11 months after it partially collapsed, is long overdue to be razed. More than 100 people gathered for a rally Sunday afternoon outside 78-15 Jamaica Ave., home … Continue reading

City solicits civics’ help for safer Woodhaven Boulevard

In an effort to make Woodhaven Boulevard – one of Queens’ most dangerous and congested roads – safer, the city Department of Transportation has been studying the major corridor for years but just reached out to community leaders who use the road daily to better assess what changes need to be implemented. A spokeswoman for the DOT said the city gathered the Metropolitan Transportation Authority and representatives from community boards 5, 6, 9 and 10 to discuss “select bus service” … Continue reading

As reports of domestic violence increase in South Queens, police reach out to community

The number of reported domestic violence cases has increased dramatically in South Queens – but police said such a spike is only the tip of the iceberg to representing the magnitude of the crime in the area, and officers are urging victims to speak up about what they said is an epidemic that has taken root across not just the borough, but the entire country. The plea for victims to reach out – whether it’s to police or a variety … Continue reading

South Queens leaders slam NYRA over a ‘dangerous’ Aqueduct

After deteriorating for decades, Aqueduct Racetrack in South Ozone Park is a dangerous eyesore that is a growing concern for those in the facility and residents in the surrounding area, said state Assemblyman Phil Goldfeder (D-Rockaway Park) – who announced Monday that he is authoring a bill that would require millions of dollars for capital improvement projects at the decaying venue. “There’s currently a great race going on and, sadly, Aqueduct is finishing last,” Goldfeder said. The South Queens lawmaker … Continue reading

Owner of collapsed Woodhaven building ordered to begin repair work

  The head officer of the company that owns the Woodhaven building that partially collapsed last April appeared in Queens Criminal Court Friday and was ordered to immediately hire an architect and file for a work permit for the site at 78-19 Jamaica Ave. that residents, civic leaders and legislators have said poses considerable danger to the community, according to a source with inside knowledge of the situation. George Kochabe, the head officer of 78-19 Jamaica LLC, appeared in court … Continue reading

Maria Thomson resigns from WRBA board after 40 years of service

Woodhaven runs in Maria Thomson’s blood. Four decades ago, the area leader launched her career as a civic activist by becoming a member of the then two-year-old Woodhaven Residents’ Block Association’s board of director. Now, seven U.S. presidents later, Thomson is hanging up her hat as a board member – though the woman who is also the executive director of the Woodhaven Greater Development Corporation and the Woodhaven Business Improvement District – both of which were formed following the WRBA … Continue reading

Graffiti Tarnishes Woodhaven Boulevard Area

Mass amounts of graffiti plague Woodhaven Boulevard, according to area residents attending Saturday’s Woodhaven Residents’ Block Association meeting – and the individuals said it is time to find solutions for the removal and prevention of the unsightly scrawlings. Woodhaven resident Patty Eggers said “the graffiti is unbelievable” at Rockaway Boulevard and Atlantic Avenue around where a pool hall used to be located. She added that, “Rockaway Boulevard is full of roving bandits.” “Could you pay extra attention up there?” Eggers … Continue reading

At Ozone Park school, remembering Roman Pirozek with memorial scholarship

Anyone who knew Roman Pirozek, Jr. understood that to say he loved flying was an understatement. The Woodhaven teen rarely went a day without operating a remote-control helicopter – and he frequently spoke about ultimately immersing himself in a career flying a plane. His world, it seemed, belonged in the air. After Pirozek died at the age of 19 in September, when he was struck by a remote-control helicopter in Calvert Vaux Park in Gravesend, Brooklyn, those who knew him … Continue reading

Home sales on the rise in Queens, new report says

  The real estate market throughout Queens – including the borough’s southern neighborhoods – enjoyed a lucrative end to 2013 with record-setting numbers, a Douglas Elliman report said. The group’s quarterly survey of residential sales throughout the borough showed 2013’s inventory and absorption rates fell to the lowest level since that information was tracked in mid-2005, while sales skyrocketed when compared to the same time in the year prior. “With the surge in sales, the absorption rate – the number … Continue reading

Spikes in flood insurance premiums could be delayed with Senate vote expected this month

A bipartisan group of federal lawmakers, including U.S. Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY), announced this week that relief could be headed the way of South Queens if legislators soon pass a bill that would delay flood insurance rates from increasing so dramatically that many civic leaders have said it would drive residents from their homes in the wake of being unable to afford skyrocketing insurance costs, creating ghost towns in coastal communities across the country. According to Schumer, the Senate is … Continue reading

As Woodhaven’s Newest Civic President, Colberg to Focus on Community Involvement

Martin Colberg summed up his platform in one word after being elected president of the Woodhaven Residents’ Block Association: outreach. Colberg, along with two others, were tapped as the civic group’s newest officers to turn the year 2014 into one of success. After years on the board of directors, the Woodhaven native said he was excited to take the reins and steer the WRBA into an even greater advocacy group in Queens. “This is a very big community and we … Continue reading

New Officers to Take the Helm at WRBA

The Woodhaven Residents’ Block Association announced this week there will be a changing of the guard at the more than 40-year-old neighborhood organization that does everything from advocate for cleaner and safer streets to working with residents on individual problems navigating city bureaucracy. Come 2014, Martin Colberg will take over as president, replacing Ed Wendell, while Giedra Kregzdys will serve as the new vice president, and Stephen Forte will continue as treasurer. As a sign of the block association’s recent … Continue reading

Man Dies After Hit-and-Run in Woodhaven, Residents Call for Change

After a Brooklyn man was killed while trying to cross Woodhaven Boulevard at Jamaica Avenue, residents are calling for change to an area they say is plagued by accidents and dangerous road conditions. Yunior Antonio Perez Rodriguez, 35, of Brooklyn, was struck and killed around 3:15 a.m. last Saturday, according to the NYPD. Police said the driver fled the scene. According to cops, he may have been driving a white Honda Civic. The 35-year-old was pronounced dead at Jamaica Hospital … Continue reading