Wednesday, July 23, 2014

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NY1 For You: Queens Homeowners Get To Root Of Cracked Sidewalk Problem

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A tree planted by city officials is ripping up a sidewalk in Sunnyside, Queens and causing a huge headache for some nearby homeowners. NY1's Susan Jhun filed the following NY1 For You report.

A lifted sidewalk in Sunnyside, Queens is a tripping hazard that local homeowners say the city should pay to fix.

"It's a city-planted tree. We're assuming that as a result we shouldn't have to take care of these repairs, especially since we had filed a couple of complaints," says homeowner Angelica Kennedy.

The city tree is uprooting and cracking up the sidewalk in front of the Kennedys' house.

A few months ago, the homeowners were told they might be eligible for a pilot program where the city would repair their sidewalk. Instead, out of nowhere, the Kennedys were hit with a violation for a broken sidewalk, giving them 45 days to fix it.

"We're doing our best to maintain the condition of the sidewalk so that nobody gets hurt, but at some point there's only so much that owners can be asked to do for a very old city tree," says homeowner Joseph Kennedy.

That does not include paying an estimated $1,000 to fix the sidewalk.

The Kennedys are also concerned that if they do pay to have the sidewalk fixed over time, the tree roots will just crack it up again.

NY1 contacted the Department of Parks and Recreation. After the agency sent an inspector to the site, a spokesman told the station that the property is now scheduled to be repaired this summer, under the department's free Trees & Sidewalks Program.

It is a relief for the Kennedys, who are hoping this fix will get to the root of the problem.

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