Traffic Lights are Up and Running On at Kingsbridge Heights Intersection!

5 Sep
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Traffic lights installed at corner of Kingsbridge Terrace and Heath Avenue. Photo by Jordan Moss

9.5.17 – After more than a year and a half of attending Community Board 8 committee meetings, gathering petition signatures, meeting with neighbors, and ultimately collaborating with Assemblyman Jeffrey Dinowitz, the dangerous Y-shaped intersection of Fort Independence Street and Heath Avenue in Kingsbridge Heights now has traffic lights and walk/don’t walk signs.

And guess what? It’s much, much safer.

It was a complicated busy intersection with zero crosswalks. I found it dangerous. I stressed about my daughter and her pals crossing it. Heck, I worried about anyone crossing it.

Ultimately, after Ann DiLucca, Nova Calise and I gathered petition signatures, as members of the Fort Independence Park Neighborhood Association (with the help of the wonderful staff of the Kingsbridge Heights Community Center), Assemblyman Dinowitz organized a press conference right at the intersection with other elected officials (Councilman Andrew Cohen, Congressman Adriano Espaillat, State Senator Jeffrey Klein, and State Senator Gustavo Rivera), KHCC executive director Margaret Della and 50th Precinct’s deputy inspector Terence O’Toole. Not long after that the DOT (Department of Transportation) reviewed the intersection and made a relatively quick decision. Dinowitz and his staff played a key role in encouraging the agency to do the right thing.

In our petition, we expressed particular concern about the intersection of Fort Independence Street, Giles Place and Kingsbridge Terrace. That’s particularly where kids, families and staff have to cross to get to PS 360 or KHCC. As I reported in September 2015, parents were very concerned about the lack of a crosswalk there. That still doesn’t exist, but Dinowitz said DOT is open to revisiting this related issue. The good news is that the traffic lights have slowed down vehicles heading in both directions. So it seems like crossing there will be a tad safer. But we should know more after school begins. (Please share any thoughts or concerns you might have by commenting on this post or emailing me at bronxmatters@gmail.com.) On another important, though less critical, note, the crosswalks where the traffic lights are still need to be painted and Dinowitz’s office said they’re staying on top of the DOT to make sure it happens ASAP.

That said, we are excited and relieved and hope to have as much success in many other community-improvement pursuits.

-Jordan Moss

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Bronx Artist Needed to Facilitate Workshops

22 Aug

Just got an email about this. Passing it along …
Nesting the Arts Project (NAP): Virtual Residency
Due September 3rd, 2017.
Description of Project: NAP is a unique initiative created by BxArts Factory to nurture the use of art at home. We’ve seen the impact of the Arts, its influence on creativity, empowerment, development of confidence and unification between generations. It's also known to improve communication and emotional connection among family members. Through a series of workshops we will bring parents and children together to create art. Our hope for the program is to spark parent’s desire to nest the arts as part of their parenting legacy.
Call for Artists: We are looking for a Bronx artist to plan and facilitate four workshops this Fall. The applicant must have experience teaching workshops to an adult audience. The dates for the workshops are Fridays Oct. 6th, Oct. 27th, Nov. 17th & Dec. 1st. Workshops will be 2 hours each and materials will be provided by BxArts Factory. The selected artist will receive a stipend of $450.
The workshops will be presented to groups of parents participating on Parenting Workshops with Wonderfully Made Family Services, a local Bronx organization. The activities must be created and presented in a format that allows parents to easily replicate the art process and activity with their children at home. Activities must be appropriate for all ages. In an effort to showcase how these activities can be done in a comfortable and familiar space, we will be hosting these workshops in the homes of some of the parents attending. We hope that having the workshops in their homes help parents to feel comfortable and less anxious about the experience. Childcare will be available for participating parents as needed. The groups will be small as this experience is intended to be personable and non-threatening (10 to 15 adults).
Who can apply: Bronx artists, 21 years old or older that work on a variety of mediums or different artistic genres. Applicants must be available to work on the specified dates.

Due date: September 3rd, 2017 at midnight.
The selected candidate will be notified by September 23rd, 2017
APPLICATION FORM HERE!
Important: The selected artist will be asked to sign a commitment letter prior to beginning the project and an evaluation/reflection form as requirements for full payment.

Beauty in the Bronx (As Usual) – Van Cortlandt Park

10 Jun

NYCHA Danger in Kingsbridge Heights

7 Mar

Photo by Jordan Moss


This photo is not a mess of the month. For many months, NYCHA has left an ugly, ample mess of mattressses; old, broken-up furniture and cabinetry spread on the ground of this Fort Independence Houses lot on Heath Avenue. This scandalous scatter does get picked up at some point, but in the meantime it’s a dastardly dump. Yes, it may signify that there’s critical rehab work being done inside (let us pray!) but that doesn’t make this OK. It’s time for NYCHA to clear this miserable mess and keep it that way on a regular basis. Also, they need to simply close, if not lock, the gate. I easily wandered in to take this pic, but I don’t want it accessible to kids who might wander the lot and grab a nail or something. NYCHA may be significantly short of dough but keeping this area clean and safe isn’t gonna cost them much, if anything. 

Do it, NYCHA. Now!

Kingsbridge Pizza and Beer Joint Opens Tomorrow

5 Mar

Bronx Ale House owners are about to open a pizza/beer joint like a block away on Kingsbridge Avenue in Kingsbridge. It’s right down the block from the Riverdale diner. Official opening tomorrow. (Graffiti art by Tracy168)

(Photos by Jordan Moss) 

ReelAbilities Film Festival in Bronx 

2 Mar

I’m at Lincoln Center right now and just came across a brochure for the ReelAbilities Film Festival, which is on now in every borough through March 8. It’s sponsored by JCC (Jewish Community Council) Manhattan. In the Bronx, six documentary films focusing on a variety of personal and collective struggles are on the schedule. Lehman College is showing six of the films through 3/7, and the Bronx Library Center will show one this Saturday 3/4 at 2:30: “How Sweet the Sound: The Blind Boys of Alabama.” Very cool. For more info, go to ny.reelabilities.org.

Cuomo: State Will Reignite Massive Skating Facility Plan for Bronx’s Kingsbridge Armory

9 Jan
Kingsbridge Armory 2016

The Kingsbridge Armory. Photo by Jordan Moss

The massive ice skating facility planned for the Kingsbridge Armory was brought back to life today.

As the Norwood News reports, Gov. Cuomo announced that the state will provide funding close to the tally required to reignite a plan to transform the armory into a massive home to nine ice-skating rinks, the largest such entity in the universe.

It ain’t over ’til it’s over, but Cuomo’s announcement appears to bring the complicated project close to a resolution after 23 years of a long, devoted community campaign led from the beginning by the Northwest Bronx Community and Clergy Coalition.

For Norwood News armory coverage from 1999 on, go here and here.

 

 

D.C. Columnist’s Great Idea Makes Me Think of Trump’s Bronx Golf Course

15 Dec

Washington Post columnist Catherine Rampell has a good idea — apply the controversial, but very legal, policy of eminent domain to Donald Trump, who loves it to death, at Trump Tower in Manhattan, where a clogged security site is already sucking millions of police protection cash from the city. Through eminent domain, the city would have to pay Trump for the building before they dismiss him from the site. But, in her column, Rampell explains how it’s well worth it.

Made me think of the Bronx golf course Trump currently runs. He doesn’t own the property, so eminent domain isn’t applicable. But the city could end its contract with him, as welcome2thebronx.com sought last year in a petition effort after Trump said that Mexico is: “sending people that have lots of problems, and they are bringing those problems to us. They’re bringing drugs, and bringing crime, and their rapists.”

That’s when Trump even lost the support of Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz, Jr., who decided to boycott the site. “When he speaks out against Muslims, when he speaks out against Mexicans and Latinos, that to me is anti-Bronx,” Diaz said, as reported in dnainfo.com. “That’s the reason why I boycotted the golf course.”