Letter: A Disaster In The Making

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The words of the Board of Education president and the supporters of the planned parking lot on the corner of Polo and Beach roads quoted in Ms. ArbitalJacoby’s article “Will the New Parking Lot at North High Ease the Morning Rush?” in the Feb. 6 issue clearly demonstrate the fallacious reasoning used by them since the plan’s inception.

Ms. Berkowitz, the rest of the Board of Education and Dr. Prendergast have continuously and falsely claimed that the community was involved in the lot’s planning from the beginning. However, Ms. Berkowitz states, “The proposed parking lot was, and remains, a priority item to the NHS community, consisting of administration, staff, parents and students.” She is paraphrased as saying that “each district school was asked to develop a list of priorities for their building, and North High’s Shared Decision Making Committee, comprised of administrators, teachers, parents and students…”

Each statement does not include the community, despite her claims to the contrary for the past two years. At least she is finally admitting the reality that in a project affecting the surrounding community (in terms of traffic and destruction of green space), the board did not ask for that community’s input during its planning.

And, then, there is one resident’s statement that kids race on Beach Road to get one of a limited number of parking spots. One would think that a “NYC senior transportation official” would know that traffic problems are multifactorial. His statement touches on a minor point, missing the real issue.

In fact, having observed the student parking behavior over the years, one would recognize that the students race because they arrive within five minutes of the start of school. They do not leave adequate time to park, lock their cars and walk to their class.

Even with 200 parking spots, the students would still race, because they have no time to spare, arriving just as the bell is about to ring. Actually, the traffic will be worse because there will be double the number of cars arriving from multiple directions at the same time to the same single entrance, worsening the traffic backup and increasing the risk of more fender benders like the one also mentioned in the article.

It is time for all the parking lot supporters to realize that their plan is a disaster in the making.

—Robert Mendelson

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