Flashback To 1999
State Senator George Onorato and Assemblymember Denis Butler, who both double as Democratic district leaders in Astoria and Long Island City, respectively, last week came out strongly against the 'N' train extension to La Guardia Airport. In separate statements, both said they were "vehemently" opposed to the project.
Their statements were issued at the May 11th public hearing on the proposed route, one of several being considered to create a direct rail link to the Western Queens airport. In a statement read into the record by an aide for Onorato, who was at work in Albany, Onorato stated he was "vehemently opposed to this plan" and promised "to use all the power and influence of his seat to prevent this plan from taking effect."
Butler noted in his statement that "if enacted, this plan would seriously affect the residential and business communities of Astoria without providing any real benefit" to Queens residents.
Also opposing the 'N' train extension are Council Speaker Peter Vallone (D- Astoria) and Councilmembers Walter McCaffrey (D- Woodside) and John Sabini (D- Jackson Heights). Vallone has threatened to block funding for this route. He favors instead extending the 'Q' and 'B' subway lines from the 21st Street Queensbridge station in Long Island City via newly built tracks along the East River to the airport,