Tuesday, April 03, 2007

"Bronx School: Stadium Construction Causing Major Traffic Problems" NY1 4/3/7

Bronx School: Stadium Construction Causing Major Traffic Problems

April 03, 2007

Construction of the new Yankee Stadium has fans excited about the future, but officials at a nearby school say the work caused big problems for teachers and students on Opening Day, and they're concerned about what the rest of the season might bring. NY1’s Lindley Pless filed the following report.

“There's a new stadium being built. There's a little bit of constriction as far as getting in as a result of that,” said Police Commissioner Ray Kelly. “We added some additional traffic enforcement agents to facilitate the flow of traffic. Other than that, it's the same way we've handled Opening Day the last five years.”

The principal at All Hallows high school on 164th Street in Highbridge says that is not the case. He says this year’s Opening Day caused headaches for him and other teachers.

“It was a major inconvenience,” said principal Sean Sullivan. “I’ve been here for 30 plus years; that’s 30 opening days. And we’ve never had a situation like we had this morning.

School officials say when police put blockades at the intersection of 164th Street and Grand Concourse, teachers and students couldn't get to the school or the parking lot behind it.

“It was not a matter of just losing the seven parking spaces that we have in front of school,” said the school’s president Paul Krebbs. “We also were not going to have access to get anybody, by any stretch of the imagination, into our driveway.”

Krebbs says he hopes construction on the new stadium, and other home games this season don't mean they'll face the same mayhem in the future.

“We know that many of the businesses here depend on the Yankees,” he said. “But we also know that the 600 kids here are deserving of a good education, and we should be able to do that without interruption.”

All Hallows isn't the only place where people are complaining. Anthony Rice says he feels the new stadium isn't doing anything good for those living in the area.

“I really don't know anyone that lives in this area that wanted the stadium over there,” said Rice.

As far as Rice is concerned, the Bronx was doing just fine before the Yankees started building the new stadium. He says it has really been an inconvenience for those living in the area.

“It's not a good thing for the neighborhood. The aesthetic value, I feel, has gone downhill. I feel it is going to present a lot of traffic, pollution,” said Rice. “People say that it is going to produce a lot of jobs, but I see most of them being seasonal. I’ve been in the Bronx for about fifteen years, and I don’t know anyone that works out at the stadium.”

- Lindley Pless


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