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Queens Blvd. at Skillman Ave
Photo Gallery: Queens Blvd

Death Blvd
 Eastbound Queens Boulevard comes off the Sunnyside Yards Bridge for one of the last times it will do so for at least a year. Shot late March, 2001, just days before a planned reconstruction begins that will shut half that bridge down. As is the case by Hunter and 29th Streets, this is a No-gridlock zone. Box blockers face license points on top of fines, which means you can't proceed unless you know you'll clear the box before the light changes. A block ahead, Queens Boulevard veers sharply to the left, essentially robbing Thompson Avenue of its right of way. The elevated then releases the boulevard traffic lanes into daylight, as it takes center median stage.
 This area, hard by the rail yards, is mostly industrial. The Getty station wants any truckers passing by to know it carries diesel. That sign is partly blocked by the blue van. Get out of my way! Maybe he's afraid of blocking the box. Maybe he stopped to read what hours boulevardiers are not allowed to make left turns onto Skillman. Maybe he thinks his van is over 12' 6" tall. I had a shot without him, but I favored putting up action over signage. The 1920's-1930's functionalist industrial building by the confluence of Queens and Thompson is typical of the area. This hideous shadowy section of el might have been the way all of Queens Blvd might have looked like up to Roosevelt Avenue, had not the city big plans for much of Sunnyside in the late 1910's and 1920's. The Sunnyside stretching from Thompson to Roosevelt can truly count itself blessed as about the only neighborhood not blighted by its el.
 The view west from Skillman on April 1st, 2001. The next day, reconstruction began on this 90 year old stretch, closing for the next two years, the eastbound lanes.
west from van dam
 Not much territory separates Skillman from Van Dam Street to its east. The edge of this Getty station is what passes for the middle ground between them.

©2001, Jeff Saltzman. All right reserved.