Anyone who has seen East 86th Street over the past two years can likely do more than simply shake their head. It has been a mess, an absolute mess! There has been water main replacement, gas main replacement, building demolition, and 2nd Avenue Subway construction. They are done, but wait, there are two last big projects that are being worked on- the restoration of the street after the various mains were replaced, and the East 86th Street Streetscape revamp.
The "restoration" involves tearing up the street where mains have been replaced, tamping down the soil, filling with concrete and paving over with asphalt. The "streetscape plan" (long advocated by the East 86th Street Association of which I am a member) replaces all curbs from 2nd Avenue to Park Avenue, expands sidewalks for bus bulbs, construction of pedestrian-friendly corner bump outs, expanding the size and number of tree pits, adding new trees, adding decorative tree guards and plantings to all the pits from 2nd Ave to Park, and adding planters and new street furniture. The numbers are impressive:
-15 new trees
- 3 trees replaced
- 304 Shrubs (18"-24")
- 37 Shamrock Inkberry Bushes (30"-36")- 2759 flowering bulbs- 301 ornamental Grasses (3 gallons each)- 204 perennials - 10 citibenches w backs- 58 new, matching tree guards
Fortunately, the last two projects are in the final stretch and all work is due to be completed by the end of November. If you want to keep track, the work is completed on the south side of East 86th, and they are now progressing with curbs, sidewalks and tree pits on the north side of 86th heading from east to west. They are approaching Lex, so a little more than a block to go. Or, follow @East86th on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram. Residents on or near East 86th Street, who have endured so much, are about to be repaid with plenty of green!
Published in cooperation with AFineBlog.