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Construction Begins on Infrastructure Improvements Along Ten Blocks of Rockaway Beach Boulevard in Far Rockaway

December 12, 2018

DEP: 718-595-6600,
DDC: Ian Michaels,, 718-391-1589
DOT: Brian Zumhagen, 212-839-4850,

Far Rockaway, NY - The NYC Department of Environmental Protection (DEP), NYC Department of Transportation (DOT) and NYC Department of Design and Construction (DDC) joined Council Member Donovan Richards today to break ground on a $31 million project that will bring street and infrastructure improvements to Rockaway Beach Boulevard/Arverne Boulevard between Beach 49th and Beach 59th Streets, as well as Beach 67th Street between Rockaway Beach Boulevard and Rockaway Freeway and part of Beach 53rd Street. The project, which is being managed by DDC for DEP and DOT, is scheduled to be completed in summer 2021.

“Third Avenue has been a chronic flooding location for many years and this $52 million “This $31 million investment in the Rockaways will help to reduce chronic roadway flooding and ensure a reliable supply of high quality drinking water,” said NYC Department of Environmental Protection Commissioner Vincent Sapienza. “I’d like to thank Council Member Richards, a tireless advocate for his constituents, and our partners at DOT and DDC for helping us improve the quality of life for residents and businesses on the Rockaways.”

“This project will provide the infrastructure that will enable additional housing along a half-mile stretch of Rockaway Beach Boulevard,” said NYC Department of Design and Construction Commissioner Lorraine Grillo. “The project will also help make the infrastructure serving NYCHA’s Ocean Bay housing more resilient, and the road conditions better for pedestrians and drivers alike. DDC is working with DOT to make improvements throughout Far Rockaway and looks forward to completing this job in 2021.”

“We thank Council Member Richards and our partners at DDC and DEP for their work on this critical infrastructure project, which lays the foundation for safer, more inviting streets for all roadway users,” said DOT Queens Borough Commissioner Nicole Garcia. “From new sidewalks to fresh roadtop to lighting upgrades, this comprehensive street reconstruction will benefit those residents today and in generations to come.”

“The tragedy of Superstorm Sandy highlighted the severe infrastructure needs across the Rockaway peninsula and thankfully the de Blasio administration is committed to addressing these issues that impact residents on a daily basis,” said Council Member Donovan Richards. “This $31 million project will improve drainage, safety and quality of life for residents who live in one of the areas hit the hardest every time it rains in the Rockaways. I’d like to thank Mayor de Blasio, DEP Commissioner Sapienza, DOT Commissioner Trottenberg and DDC Commissioner Grillo for their commitment to fixing systemic issues that have been ignored on the Rockaways for decades.”

The project will upgrade the water distribution system in the area, replacing water mains with 4,710 feet of new ductile iron water mains ranging in size from six inches up to 36 inches in diameter, as well as 2,945 feet of new 36-inch steel trunk water mains. More than 1,250 feet of storm sewers will be upgraded with new sewers ranging from 15 inches in diameter up to 5.5 feet wide by 3.5 feet high. Numerous sanitary sewers will also be installed or replaced, with 2,525 feet of new pipes ranging from 10 to 20 inches in diameter.

DDC Deputy Commissioner for Infrastructure Eric Macfarlane explains how the $31 million project will benefit the community while Council Member Donovan Richards (left) and DOT Queens Borough Commissioner Nicole Garcia (right) look on

Streets in the area will be regraded to reduce ponding and then reconstructed with over 15,000 square yards of new asphalt, 5,280 square yards of new concrete sidewalks and 3,930 feet of new steel-faced concrete curbs. New street lighting will be installed on Rockaway Beach Boulevard from Beach 49th Street to Beach 54th Street and the traffic signals at Beach 54th Street will be updated.

The project will also upgrade fire protection in the area, with seven new fire hydrants added and ten old fire hydrants replaced with newer models. The FDNY communication system on Rockaway Beach Boulevard will be updated from Beach 49th Street to Beach 54th Street.

To manage the needs of residents and businesses during construction, DDC has a full-time Community Construction Liaison (CCL) assigned to the project. CCL Raquel Duran keeps the neighborhood apprised of construction progress, coordinates street closures and utility shutoffs and can arrange special requests such as deliveries to local homes and businesses. Ms. Duran works on-site and is directly accessible to the public at 718-819-5483 or by email at
About the NYC Department of Environmental Protection
DEP manages New York City’s water supply, providing more than 1 billion gallons of high quality drinking water each day to more than 9.6 million residents, including 8.6 million in New York City. The water is delivered from a watershed that extends more than 125 miles from the city, comprising 19 reservoirs and three controlled lakes. Approximately 7,000 miles of water mains, tunnels and aqueducts bring water to homes and businesses throughout the five boroughs, and 7,500 miles of sewer lines and 96 pump stations take wastewater to 14 in-city treatment plants. DEP has nearly 6,000 employees, including almost 1,000 in the upstate watershed. In addition, DEP has a robust capital program, with a planned $19.4 billion in investments over the next 10 years that will create up to 3,000 construction-related jobs per year. For more information, visit, like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter.


About the NYC Department of Design and Construction
The Department of Design and Construction is the City’s primary capital construction project manager. In supporting Mayor de Blasio’s long-term vision of growth, sustainability, resiliency, equity and healthy living, DDC provides communities with new or renovated public buildings such as such as firehouses, libraries, police precincts, and new or upgraded roads, sewers and water mains in all five boroughs. To manage this $14 billion portfolio, DDC partners with other City agencies, architects and consultants, whose experience bring efficient, innovative and environmentally-conscious design and construction strategies to City projects. For more information, please visit