Subway Ventilation Work Foments Dangerous Conditions on Forsyth Street, Neighbors Say

Posted on: August 12th, 2019 at 5:00 am by

As construction proceeds on the new subway ventilation system beneath Forsyth Street, conditions above-ground are deteriorating.

Neighbors allege that the staging area – opaque dust tarps, chain-link fencing, and plywood boards – creates blind spots and a “tunnel” conducive to illicit activity. Sex, drug use, and passing out are already commonplace on the block, no matter the time of day.

This is only the beginning, too.

As previously reported, the infrastructure fifteen feet beneath the roadbed along the Sara D. Roosevelt Park perimeter was identified as the eighth-highest priority level out of roughly 250 sections. (The original unit was reportedly built in 1962.) Construction of this new Emergency Ventilation Plant isn’t slated to conclude until August 2022. And that’s just the initial projection, likely to over-run.

In it for the long haul, several residents on the block are communicating with the MTA, but the response appears lackluster. For example, the group requested removal of dust tarps during off hours. The response – installing weak solar-powered lights (that don’t work), even though the activities in question aren’t just at night.

These issues and more were the subject of the second meeting with MTA officials earlier this month, where residents requested increased police patrols in the vicinity.

Recent Stories

Electeds Behind ‘Save Our Storefronts Act’ Tour LES Small Businesses

Since last spring, the coronavirus pandemic has laid waste to countless small businesses around the city, with many more barely treading water. Assemblymember Harvey Epstein and State Senator Brad Holyman are looking to change that. The two elected officials visited Lower East Side stores Wednesday in an effort to promote the Save Our Storefronts Act. […]

The Meatball Shop Sues Jersey Shore’s Snooki and Deena over Merch

Jersey Shore alums Nicole “Snooki” Polizzi and Deena Cortese are in hot sauce this week for a line of “Meatball”-related merch. The Meatball Shop filed a lawsuit against the duo, alleging trademark infringement, according to TMZ. The legal papers also claim that Polizzi and Cortese lifted the restaurant’s merchandise for use on their “Team Meatball” […]

Dr Smood Shutters LES Outpost After 3 Years

Three years later, the Dr Smood organic cafe on the Lower East Side is flatlined. Readers relayed that the neon signs hanging inside 181 East Houston Street were deposed yesterday, along with the writing on the windows. The light housings now sit discarded. When reached for comment, a spokesperson stated only that, “sadly [the cafe] […]

Stanton Street 99-Cent Pizzeria Robbed Before Thanksgiving

Another commercial robbery in Hell Square. Last week, just before Thanksgiving, the 99-cent pizzeria at 105 Stanton Street fell victim. Police say that two men busted through the front door and stole money from the cash register ($1,400) as well as an electronic bicycle (valued at $2,400). Both individuals were seen fleeing eastbound on Stanton Street […]

Running for Chinatown Amidst a Pandemic (Again)

For the second time since spring, one Chinatown native is literally stepping up to help the community. Leland Yu, the 28-year-old member of the Chinese Freemasons Athletic Club, returns to the pavement this Saturday for his 12-hour “Run for Chinatown.” The last time around, he clocked an astonishing 61.2 miles, and raised over $18,000. Yu […]