School Impacts

Read posts about how this construction affects kids' right to education by clicking here.

Read the letters from PS75 Principal Bob O'Brien and PS75 PTA:

May 18, 2015

Dear Mayor de Blasio,

Last year, you launched Vision Zero from the steps of our school. We stood with you that day, because we know all too well the feeling that we’re putting our children’s lives at risk every time we bring them to school at this deadly intersection.

We cannot accept any more traffic deaths in our community, and we especially do not accept that our kids should risk their lives to attend public school. The crossing guard and new traffic rules at 95th Street and West End Avenue have helped make our kids safer here. Still, our children will always have to take extra measures to be safe in the crowded rush of cars pushing their way off the West Side Highway on the narrow street in front of PS75.

Today, the Department of Buildings is poised to approve permits for a massive high-rise construction project literally on the doorstep of PS75. The applicants propose closing one lane of the already-congested West 95th Street, squeezing heavy traffic into yet a smaller space, and ejecting frustrated drivers into our deadly crossing at West End Avenue.

The dangers to our kids are myriad. The traffic pressure created if DOB approves these permits will be incredibly dangerous, undoing the benefit of Vision Zero measures at this corner. The noise and vibration of heavy construction, as the developers attempt an experimental construction of a building atop an existing building, will make learning impossible – especially for students of the NEST program for autistic learning which PS75 has piloted so successfully. The threat of falling construction materials as cranes lift massive construction materials literally over the heads of children entering the school and playing in its yard cannot be overstated. Last time there was a construction project on our doorstep, construction materials did in fact fall on the head of a child – this is not a theoretical danger, but a real one.

You are the Mayor for Vision Zero, and also for equitable education. Our children have a right to be safe on the street and in their school. But the Department of Buildings has not gotten the memo: they are prepared to grant permits without considering traffic danger or disruption to education.

There is a bill before the City Council that would limit construction noise (and in effect, traffic) near a school, but it comes too late for PS75 even if it passes. Other schools citywide are in the same trouble as the housing boom resumes.

Our kids need your intervention. Mr. Mayor, please use your authority to stop DOB from issuing these permits without addressing the impact on PS75. Add DOB to Vision Zero, and require DOB to consider construction’s impact on schools in approving permits.

Sincerely, The PTA and parents of PS75