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Queens Blvd. at 71st Ave
Looking East
Photo Gallery: Queens Blvd

Death Blvd

policea pedestrian was killed crossing hereThe 71st/Continental Avenue intersection is an unfortunate member in lousy standing of the Dark Legion of Killer Crossings. On this bright February afternoon, the police and traffic agents were out in near martial law force. Every time I stopped to shoot, there went another cruiser, marked and unmarked alike, lights flashing, and siren whooping. Even the traffic agents, long relegated to wandering about checking for expired meters, were scooting after moving violators, something I'd never seen before. This intersection is usually far more clogged with predestrians than most others along the boulevard, even the other Killer Crossings. In addition to an express subway stop, the only such station between Union Tpke and Roosevelt Avenue, it is also a convergence point for bus lines, the terminal for the two Queens Blvd subway line locals and the home ground for the always busy Midway Theater.
Looking east at the westbound traffic, with the office tower whose name I know not far in the background at Union Tpke a mile or so away. I didn't even notice that little obelisk shaped concrete thingy on the center median next to the Mitsubishi SUV. I wonder now what that was for; maybe a mileage marker, or something related to the subway below? Right now, however, it might as well serve as the universal gravestone of Death Boulevard's unknown rundown victims.
A southeast look across at the brown glass Cord Meyer Building. Cord Meyer was the developer of Forest Hills Gardens way back when, before either the great depression or the great widening of Death Blvd. Now, its employees look out their tinted windows and see the big orange "A Pedestrian was Killed Here" signs staring back at them.
And my bus arrives. All afternoon, I was hoping on and off with my unlimited Metrocard, having left my car out of the way near Union Tpke. Now it was farewell to 71st /Continental and on to my primary objective, 67th Avenue.
BOWLING PIN UPDATE: 3/20/2001. A motorist, enraged over receiving a ticket for double parking at a bus stop here, tried to take off and ran over the ticketing officer's foot. She then came out of the car and berated the injured cop before being arrested. The motorist was identified in the Queens Examiner 3/29/2001 issue, as Barino Gennaro of Middle Village.

© 2001, Jeff Saltzman.