(UPDATED 1/15/15) Dear LIRR: Please construct walkway overpass at Woodmere Station
UPDATE 2: On January 15th,Todd Kaminsky has brought the LIRR down to survey the issues first hand and develop an action plan
UPDATE: This cause has now been taken up by several local politicians and received front page press in the Nov 26 Nassau Herald at http://liherald.com/fivetowns/stories/Getting-across-the-tracks,61143?page=1&content_source.
The Woodmere community is attractive to many families as it offers convenient transportation to Manhattan, a plethora of synagogue options and the vibrancy of a young suburban community.
There is however, one significant obstacle to the ebb and flow of this lively community. The LIRR train tracks are conveniently situated right through the heart of the community offering access to those living on both the Southern and Northern sides of Woodmere. However, there is no passageway from one side to the other from Woodmere Boulevard all the way until Prospect Avenue – a 0.5 mile distance. This creates a dual problem as it prohibits commuters needing to catch the opposite side train from crossing the track until reaching Woodmere Boulevard and it prevents sabbath observant adults traveling on foot from conveniently accessing their neighbors on the other side of the tracks without taking a more circuitous route.
For commuters who live on the Northern side but prefer to be at the rear of the city bound train so that they can exit closer to 7th avenue, they must walk 0.2 miles out of their way to first make the train and then proceed to the rear of the platform. In addition to the inconvenience, it often creates safety issues as commuters from the North side hurry to cross the tracks in order to catch the train. Similarly for commuters on the Southern side but board the train closer to 7th avenue on their return home, they too must walk a far distance to pass over the tracks and then proceed to their respective homes.
The absence of an overpass also creates a significant obstacle for the heavy Orthodox Jewish community in the area. Because cars are a prohibited means of transportation on Sabbath, individuals who wish to patronize synagogues or socialize with neighbors on the other side of the tracks must make their way to one of the limited passageways to cross the tracks. Indeed, close friends and family who live no further than a few hundred feet from one another may need to walk 20 minutes to visit on Sabbath.
The community would greatly appreciate if an overpass could be constructed at the corners of Narrow Lane (on the northern side) and Northwood Lane (on the southern side) to ameliorate these great inconveniences and safety issues. There are overpasses at other local stops, including Gibson, which is only 2 stops away from Woodmere with similar obstruction issues.
Your consideration is greatly appreciated.