For well over a decade the Long Island Railroad property off 86th Street, north of Eliot Avenue in Middle Village has been easy access with unsecured fences and an accident waiting to happen. So says the Juniper Park Civic Association. “It is unbelievable that the LIRR has not secured this site especially with the heightened alert to terrorism,” said Robert Holden, president of the Juniper Park Civic Association. Trains speed by just a few feet from an unsecured fence where anyone including children can gain access in seconds.
According to the Juniper Park Civic, the area is used by graffiti vandals, burglars, and other undesirables. It is also too easy for anyone to gain access to speeding trains carrying thousands of communters daily. The Long Island Rail Road had been warned about the lack of security on this property over 10 years ago by the JPCA. As a result of complaints the railroad installed a gate on 86th Street but that did not deter anyone, says Holden. He also said the fence along 86th Street is at least 40 years old and broken or compromised in several locations.
The area is also used as a dumping ground. The LIRR promised to get back to the JPCA with a plan to secure the area. As of the date of this printing n o plan has been forthcoming. Holden said he plans to meet with Congressman Anthony Weiner to help force the LIRR secure and maintain their property.