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The Rockaway Times
CB 14 Economic Committee Recap
Boardwalk Vendors, Downtown Far Rock & Microgrids
The Economic Development
Committee of Community Board
14 convened on Monday, April
25 to discuss items such as beach
vendors near Beach 116th Street,
the revitalization of Downtown
Far Rockaway and a proposal
to bring a series of microgrids
throughout Rockaway.
A representative from the Rock-
away Beach Club, a group repre-
senting boardwalk vendors, came
to the meeting to get input on the
boundaries for boardwalk vendors
near Beach 116th Street. The RBC
proposed a two-block buffer zone,
meaning vendors could only go
as close as Beach 114th or Beach
118th Street. “We’re conscious
about what mobile vendors we
place and where we place them.
We’re not trying to compete with
business on Beach 116th Street.
We’retalkingabout small ideas like
thecoconutwater kidsand lemon-
ade vendors,” the rep said.
Brian Heffernan spoke on be-
half of the Beach 116th Street Part-
nership. Heffernan initially said
that the merchants weren’t given
enough time to discuss the issue.
The RBC rep said the mobile ven-
dor permit process takes several
weeks, so she was hoping for an
answer, so the vendors could start
the application process. Heffer-
nanmade a motion to expand the
buffer zone to three blocks. Other
Community Board members like
John Cori made a motion to limit
the buffer zone to one block. Hef-
fernan’s motion passed, so once
the boardwalk is up, vendors can
only come as close as Beach 113th
or Beach119thStreets.
Representatives from the Eco-
nomic Development Corporation
were also on hand to discuss the
$91 million committed by Mayor
Bill de Blasio for the revitalization
of Downtown Far Rockaway. The
representatives explained some
background on how the money
was funded through the work of
Councilman Donovan Richards
and the Downtown Far Rocka-
way Working Group, created in
October 2015. The group has met
five times to discuss ways that
Downtown Far Rockaway could
be improved. The recommenda-
tions of the group were delivered
to the mayor on February 1, who
announced that he was commit-
ting $91 million toward the goals.
The city is still gathering input to
determinehow themoney should
be used. The EDC is planning to
hold a public meeting on May 12
so more concrete plans can be
established. Some projects that
are already being funded include
DOT and DEP work, the new Far
Rockaway library, SBS Storefront
Improvements and Sorrentino
RecreationCenter improvements.
The Economic Development
Committee also met representa-
tives from the private company,
ANBARIC, who came to discuss
their proposal that they will be
submitting to PSEGLI regarding
a system of microgrids and a ca-
ble to bring renewable energy to
Rockaway and parts of Long Is-
land. Their proposal is in response
to two RFP’s from PSEGLI, one
calling for renewable energy and
one calling for resources for West-
ern Nassau, which also includes
Rockaway. The proposals are due
soon, so the representatives want-
ed to make the community aware
of what their plan is. ANBARIC’s
original planonly included theuse
of microgrids but when PSEGLI
released their RFP’s, the compa-
ny found that much more power
was needed than what microgrids
could handle, so their new plan
incorporates an underground ca-
ble that would connect Glenwood
and Rockaway to an existing sub-
station in New Jersey. The micro-
grid portion of the plan would call
for the installation of several solar
panels at eight locations across the
peninsula,withthe largest installa-
tions over the Riis Park Parking lot
and Edgemere Landfill. The plan
would make Rockaway’s electric
more reliable, greener and easier
tobringback inablackout. It isnot
known what other companies are
submittingproposals at this time.
203 Beach 116th Street
Rockaway Park, NY 718-634-3263
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