Sunday, September 29, 2013

Sayonara Sukkah . . . until we meet again?

Presto! Change-o!  The controversial Kew Gardens Hills illegally-attached sukkah (to Shimon's Pizza/Falafel) and sidewalk hazard is finally gone (71st Road and Main Street).  Early Sunday morning, 9/29: 4 days after the obstruction was promised by the owner to the police to be removed.

For what it's worth.  An interesting geographical juxtaposition.  The sukkah is shown here across the street from the Orlow Law firm of which Steven Orlow, a former NYC Councilmember, board member of the Brandeis Association, and former Queens County Bar Association President, et alia
is a prominently-featured partner.  From the Orlow website:  "Areas of practice: plaintiff's personal injury/negligence which includes all aspects of injuries to individuals including construction accidents..."


Thursday, September 26, 2013

Sukkahs in Borough Park, Brooklyn. Are these ramshackle hovels which are blocking the public sidewalks and the public streets legal?

Intersection of 15th Avenue and 45th Street

15th Avenue between 51st and 50th Streets
Intersection of 15th Avenue and 54th Street

54th Street between 15th and 14th Avenues

Same as above

12th Avenue between 58th and 57th Streets

Same as above

Same as above

12th Avenue between 57th and 56th Streets

Same as above

Same as above

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

So long Sukkah . . . not!

Here is my 311 complaint made on Sunday, 9/22.  Note the wording that the sukkah will be removed on Wednesday.

Here is a photograph of the still-standing sukkah.  It was taken in the early morning hours of THURSDAY, 9/26.
Another complaint made to 311 stating that the sukkah on Thursday was still-standing.  In violation of its having to be removed on Wednesday.

And so, according to the 311 complaint response, the NYPD shows up and sees nothing.  Dear Reader, what do you see?

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Nothing Succeeds Like Sukkah Success

Above shows my second complaint to 311 made on Sunday afternoon/early evening of 9/22/13.  I never heard any response to the original 311 reply from a promised visit of a community affairs police officer.  So, I decided to personally revisit the intersection to see if anything transpired.  Lo and behold on visiting the site again (71st Road and Main Street) in Kew Gardens Hills, a second law-breaking sukkah (in blue) was seen next to the original law-breaker!  Photos below.  Insult to injury?  Where did that come from?  And just what is going on here?

In any event, here's the response from 311.  Note the wording:  "The Police Department responded to the complaint and took action to fix the condition".  Well that's a relief!  No?  And just what is that "action"?  "It will be down by wednesday".    That's right folks, your sworn-to-uphold-the-law servant, the NYC Police Department, has acquiesed in the blatant breaking of the law for 3 more days!

By the way, I received a phone call from Officer Jackson of the 107 Precinct who had read my complaint above.  He wanted to know more information.  He told me that he was going to send a sector car over to see what was going on.  I received a return call from Officer Jackson who told me that the visiting officers were not going to ask that the sukkah be removed immediately but went along with the restaurant owner saying that the sukkah would be removed on Wednesday.  Officer Jackson mentioned that there were "religious sensitivities" to be taken into account.

And there you have it.  Some people thumb their noses at the law and get away with it.

Friday, September 20, 2013

Sukkah Slams Sidewalk Shut

I made a complaint to 311 in the early hours of Thursday, 9/19/13, that an immense structure was blocking pedestrian access to the sidewalk at the corner of 71st Road and Main Street in the Queens neighborhood of Kew Gardens Hills.  The offending edifice is adjacent to the restaurant called Simon's Pizza/Felafel.  This structure is commonly known in the Hebrew community as a sukkah.  Depicted above is the response I received from 311 that police action was not necessary and that the sidewalk was passable and that a community affairs officer was to be notified.  36 hours later, on Friday afternoon, 9/20/13,  I shot the photos depicted below that show that nothing had changed.  The 107th Precinct (Captain Frederick Grover, Commanding Officer)  is responsible for this condition to fester.   According to the Code of the NYC Department of Sanitation:  "It is illegal for anyone to place or leave any box, barrel, bale of merchandise, or other moveable property (regardless of ownership), upon any public street or any public place."  (Paragraph 16-122(b).  Fine: $100-$150)

Overall view of the illegality.
Closer view of the sidewalk obstruction.

Ramshackle structure causes dangerous conditions for pedestrians.

107th Precinct ignores plea for citizens' safety.