Community protests Green Asphalt plant

Michael Gianaris

April 14, 2011

Queens Chronicle wrote about the rally Senator Gianaris participated in against Green Asphalt Company, which is trying to construct a plant without sufficient community notification.

Area leaders and community members gathered last Thursday to ask the Department of Environmental Conservation to rescind a license issued to a green asphalt plant scheduled to open in Long Island City.

Residents say the DEC failed to notify them that Green Asphalt Co. LLC, planned to open at 37-98 Railroad Ave. The state agency said it sent letters, but elected officials and Community Board 2 say they never received them.

Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer (D-Sunnyside) said there should be a “meaningful review process,” before a plant, which will likely bring truck traffic through the streets is allowed to open. “We already have our share of truck traffic,” said local business owner and LIC resident, Sheila Lewandowski.

Though the Department of Transportation is conducting a truck bypass study in the nearby area, CB 2 Chairman Joe Conley said the agency was unaware of the project until he informed them of it. “State and city agencies must communicate together no matter how big or small a project is,” Conley said. “There was no proper notification given to our elected officials, residents, businesses and the surrounding community.”

State Sen. Mike Gianaris (D-Astoria) wrote a letter to DEC Commissioner Joseph Martens last Friday, asking that the agency reconsider its licensing. “Not only is this plant ill-conceived based on its merits and location, but the process through which it came to fruition was utterly flawed,” Gianaris wrote.

Read the full article here.