Bayside street to be co-named “Frank Skala Way”


“Frank Skala Way” is coming to Bell Boulevard.

Councilman Paul Vallone announced last week that the corner of Bell Boulevard and 40th Avenue will be co-named in honor of the late community activist.

A retired teacher who founded the East Bayside Homeowners Association, Skala created the first series of alumni books and an alumni association for Bayside High School.

He co-founded the Friends of Bayside High School and was also a former member of Community Board 11. He also organized the Bell Boulevard Restoration coalition and was a member of the Coast Guard Restoration Advisory Board at Fort Totten.

“Frank Skala was a fiercely dedicated community activist and civic leader,” Vallone said. “I look forward to hosting a co-naming ceremony in the coming months so that Bayside will forever remember Frank and the enormous impact he had on our history and quality of life.”

“My family is thrilled by this honor. Dad lived in Bayside for over seven decades. It was never his goal to be popular,” said Bonnie Skala Kiladitis. “It was to be remembered. Remembered for doing what was right for his beloved hometown.”

“Anyone who knew my father knew that there was only one way! The Frank Skala Way.”

Here’s an update on the Legionnaire’s disease situation

Health officials say that an additional case of Legionnaire’s disease was identified in downtown Flushing, but the person was not hospitalized.

The person began feeling symptoms well before the cluster was declared, but was only diagnosed on October 25th.

If by next week the Department of Health does not see any additional cases, they will declare the investigation over. However, remediation of the cooling towers identified during the investigation will continue.

Here’s some background if you need a reminder. The downtown Flushing investigation was announced on October 24. There were 15 cases reported in the area.

One person remains hospitalized, but no deaths were announced.

Legionnaire’s disease is not contagious and it is treatable if identified early, health officials say. Symptoms include fever, cough, chills and muscle aches.

New Yorkers with any of these symptoms should immediately see a doctor. Legionnaire’s disease can be diagnosed with a urine test.

39th Avenue sidewalk improvements include new trees


The sidewalk repairs along 39th Avenue between Main Street and Union Street are complete, and now they feature new trees, mulch and concrete around the empty pits.

The Greater Flushing Chamber of Commerce worked with the Parks Department to plant the four Ginkgo Biloba trees.

“Ginkgo Bilobas are extremely hardy and a proven urban street tree,” said Queens Forester Neil Barrett. “Hopefully, once they’ve had a few years to settle in, they’ll help transform that street of Flushing.”

According to Queens historian Dr. Jack Eichenbaum, ginkgo are distinguished by their fan-shaped leaves. Here’s Eichenbaum on the history of trees in Flushing:

“Flushing was the site of the first plant nurseries in North America. The Prince nurseries (the origin of Prince St!) began in the early 18th century, hybridized fruit trees for the North American climate. George Washington and Thomas Jefferson were among their customers. Later, the Parsons nurseries which occupied land now utilized by Flushing High School, Weeping Beech Park and Kissena Park, grew trees for Central Park and Prospect Park. Parsons and other nurserymen also planted exotic species of trees on the streets of Flushing. Northern Blvd, originally Broadway and the center of commercial Flushing before the subway, was a narrower thoroughfare graced by mature trees in what are now additional traffic lanes.”