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Thursday, October 30, 2014

Residents rail against construction

By Adam Wisnieski
Posted
MARISOL DÍAZ/THE RIVERDALE PRESS
A retaining wall is being constructed near the intersection of Palisade and Independence avenues.

Did the city build a guardrail in the wrong spot along Palisade Avenue in Spuyten Duyvil? And is it too ugly to be true?

Nearby residents are pleased that workers are fixing the crumbling retaining wall on Palisade Avenue near Independence Avenue, but many are outraged that a waist-high guardrail was added in what appears to be the wrong spot. They’re even more upset that it’s a far cry from matching the aesthetics of the surrounding area and the railing it’s replacing.

“It was a beautiful stone wall, now it’s pre-fab junk,” nearby resident Marion Novack said. “It’s horrible. It’s ugly … It has absolutely no symmetry”

As part of a $3.6 million major reconstruction of a retaining wall on Palisade Avenue near the Spuyten Duyvil Metro-North station, contractors removed the wrought iron fence that sits between the sidewalk and the lovely view of the Hudson River and replaced it with a temporary chain-link fence as well as a permanent waist-high metal guardrail. 

When the retaining wall is completed, a wrought iron fence will be reinstalled, but it will sit directly behind what the neighbors have dubbed the “ugly” metal guardrail.

For years, the road was bordered with a knee-high partition to protect pedestrians, said Jerry Yuchtman, president of the board at 2465 Palisade Ave. A worker on site said there was no plan to rebuild it.

“If they have the audacity to talk about the safety. I’d like to know how this will do anything?” Ms. Novack said of the new rail.

Many residents walking by thought the work was temporary, but it’s clearly not. Marshall Novack joked that the sturdy metal fence with enormous nuts and bolts looked like a prison.

“What were they expecting, a tank?” said, Ms. Novack.

The New York City Department of Design and Construction did not respond to a call for comment.

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