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Firehouse Closures, Chinatown Transportation Issues on CB3 Agenda Tonight

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Seven Alarm Blaze at 285 Grand Street, Manhattan
Firefighters battling Chinatown blaze Sunday night. Photo by Leung Photography via Flickr.

There will be some especially timely issues on the agenda when Community Board 3’s transportation committee meets tonight.  Among them: a discussion about the impact on the neighborhood if Mayor Bloomberg goes ahead with his plan to close up to 20 fire houses (citywide).

In two previous meetings, firefighters have urged members of the community to fight the proposed budget cuts.  The conversation will, of course, take on new urgency in light of Sunday night’s massive fire on Grand Street. 250 firefighters from all over the city responded. Residents were plucked from fire escapes… 29 firefighters were injured.  Tragically, an 87-year old man was killed in the fire. But it seems clear the disaster would have been much worse, if not for the heroic efforts on the fire line.

Also tonight, CB3 will be evaluating the transportation sections of the Chinatown Working Group’s master plan. It covers a wide variety of issues, such as pedestrian safety, the continued closure of Park Row and inadequate bus service in Chinatown.

The meeting takes place at 630pm, at 59 East 4th Street (near Bowery).

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