Today’s news:

Marty says that Fourth Avenue could be awesome someday

The Brooklyn Paper

Fourth Avenue will go from a concrete wasteland straight out of “Frogger” to a thoroughfare with a green oasis in the middle — if Borough President Markowitz gets his way.

The Beep announced a new pet project during his “State of the Borough” address on Wednesday at the Park Slope Armory, revealing that a team of urban planning grad students from New York University is spearheading a redesign project.

“I have long imagined this bleak stretch of road transformed into something reminiscent of the tree-lined portion of Park Avenue on Manhattan’s Upper East Side,” Markowitz gushed. “My hope is … for a stunning thoroughfare reaching from Atlantic Avenue to the Atlantic Ocean!”

Along with the floral additions to Fourth Avenue, Markowitz’s vision includes a revitalization of the area through street furniture (a la Times Square), wide pedestrian walkways and space for vendors.

The graduate students will present their final proposal in April. Their professor, Frank Fish, said that the final presentation “could form the basis for a more detailed proposal that city agencies or an architectural firm might do.”

Still, it is unclear how feasible the facelift is, given that there is almost no room for tree roots under the sidewalk, which is above a series of shallow subway tracks.

Fish said that the students would focus on making the avenue more pedestrian friendly — an improvement that would be most welcome.

Back in 2008, an assortment of “green designers” submitted various nature-friendly solutions to the death trap for pedestrians and bikers at the intersection of Fourth Avenue and Ninth Street.

For now, Fourth Avenue remains a sketchy experience, as its six lanes still look like a racetrack to speeding drivers. But the stretch from Atlantic Avenue to the Prospect Expressway has been booming with residential development, a phenomenon that has renewed urban planners’ interest in calming traffic and beautifying the now-residential corridor.

Indeed, in at least one prior State of the Borough address, Markowitz referred to his dream of seeing Fourth Avenue rechristened “Brooklyn Boulevard.” In April, he’ll be one step closer to realizing it.

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friend of marty mashugana from Brownsville says:
Next the borough pres will have these students redecorate his house.
Feb. 5, 2010, 11:23 pm
jay from p slope says:
Its really really really annoying that Markowitiz runs around acting like its some triumph that the armory in Park Slope finally opened. While its a nice place, the fact is precisely because of his lack of competence, stewardship, and I suspect corruption, that the project took 4 years to complete, and it sat empty for 2 years.
On top of that he then goes into the armory and uses it for his own political purposes after screwing it up for 4 freakin years, not to mention he and his buddies were parked illegally on the street for the speech. Hey Brooklyn Paper why did you put a picture of that in your article?
The people who actually live in the neighborhood had to deal with it, all so he can act like he did something great and get his face in the paper.
Simply put, he is attempting to politically profit off the burden he creates for the very people he claims to represent.
Hey Brooklyn Paper, why don't you investigate whether he paid to use the facility for his speech, or if he got use of it for free, which would be not legal? Why don't you investigate the money he is getting from the mayor for his "charity"? When are you going to stop acting as a mouthpiece for Markowitz and start acting like a paper with some integrity?
Feb. 6, 2010, 3:14 pm
Anthony Vassallo from South Slope says:
Once again this paper is used as a bully pulpit for the fraud known as Marty.

I remember when Dana Rubinstein wrote an article extolling the monstrosities starting going up a few years ago by disreputable builders who were funnelling moneys to Marty.

Dana even parroted "Park Avenue" in Brooklyn nonsense. No follow-up by this esteemed newspaper that looked at anything with a jaundiced eye including the criminal developers that were putting up these buildings or the lies about the retail that would be on 4th Avenue, or how much nicer the streets would be. You guys bought it (or were paid to swallow it) hook, line and sinker.

And now, Marty is back again and Gersh dons his cheerleader pom-poms to salute him again. Apparently, Bruce Ratner gave you the weekend off. Please go back to the NY Post. Too many trees are being sacrificed.
Feb. 6, 2010, 6:10 pm
Eazy D from Sheepshead Bay says:
The best thing about the story is the dull photo.
Feb. 6, 2010, 11:29 pm
Jerry Salinger from Park Slope says:
Hey, Anthony:

This is the funniest thing I've read from you in a while: "Gersh dons his cheerleader pom-poms to salute him again."

Say what you will about the Brooklyn Paper — biased, yellow or obsessed with male nudity — but a cheerleader for Marty Markowitz, it is not.

This is the only newspaper that has reported on Marty's use of Borough Hall as a cash machine (both here: http://www.brooklynpaper.com/stories/32/15/32_15_mm_marty_money.html and here: http://www.brooklynpaper.com/stories/31/37/31_37_mm_marty_money.html)

And when Marty objected, the Paper wrote this: http://www.brooklynpaper.com/stories/31/38/31_38_editorial.html

So, Anthony, Kuntzman has plenty of flaws, but being a shill for Marty Markowitz is not one of them.
Feb. 7, 2010, 3:25 pm
Paul from Park Slope says:
Hi, Jerry!

Living in the past, my friend. Now that Mr. Murdoch is the owner, any "journalistic integrity" is gathering dust on an invisible shelf in what is now the Brooklyn branch of the NY Post.

I think Jay made some great suggestions for followup news stories. Let's see if the Paper can rise to the challenge. Holding my breath on that? Not really...
Feb. 8, 2010, 10:56 am
al pankin from dowbtown says:
all planted center islands need weekly maintence. cement needs no maintence. how does the city propose to maintain the Island?
Feb. 8, 2010, 11:19 am
Peter Bray from Park Slope says:
It seems a little bit like closing the barn door after the horses have escaped. The upzoning on 4th Avenue has led to a wave of high rise residential development, most of which is of terrible design. The buildings largely turn a blank wall to 4th Avenue. I don't see how the developers' bad taste and greed and the City's policy of development-at-any-cost can undo the damage. Perhaps the planners should have thought of this before they permitted this development to occur, not after the horses escaped.

Feb. 8, 2010, 11:22 am
Richie Rich from Parkslope says:
Good article, first lets get rid of the gas stations, drug infested bodigas, tire repair shops, and run down apts. Lets replace it with high rise luxury condos. Go Marty Go!
Feb. 8, 2010, 4:57 pm
PJ from WT says:
Center islands on 4th Ave? A new place for some to take a wiz. Fill in pot holes. Clean up grafitti. Do something useful!
Feb. 10, 2010, 1:26 am
Koochie Gonzalez from 4 avenue says:
Why you gotta be hating on me R. Rich?

4th avenue is no place for martinowizz - that be my turf. you go there you be askin' for trouble amigo.

No want condos.
Feb. 10, 2010, 7:48 am

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