Nosy Neighbor: What’s doing with the sidewalk shed at PS 234?

When the last Nosy Neighbor asked about the dead trees in the PS 234 garden, the subject of the sidewalk bridge that has surrounded the building for many years now also came up. RPG wrote: “How about the sidewalk shed eyesore that’s been around the school for well over a year with no visible construction work going on?”

And NdS replied: “I’m glad someone else brought that up; the shed has been up for well over three years, yet there’s no one ever working on it. More than a year ago I tried to get an answer from the school’s office, the school’s custodial engineer, and the Department of Education. No one had a clue as to when the eyesore would be taken down, or when someone would actually be working on it, or why it is actually up there in the first place.”

I first asked these question of the School Construction Authority in September 2019, and at that time they were still putting together the scope of work. The comms person there wasn’t sure then when the sidewalk bridge went up, but he said it was due to “observed vertical cracks and pushed out bricks.” I think it’s been up for at least four years.

I circled back again recently and learned that exterior masonry work is set to start next month. The work will be done, he said, in early 2023 at which time the shed will come down.

Safe to say there is a cohort of elementary school kids who never saw the school without that sidewalk bridge. And if there’s any municipal use that should have unencumbered, well-lit sidewalks, it’s an elementary school. But here we are.

Recent Nosy Neighbors:




  1. Thanks for this response. Any idea why it’s taken 4 years for them to start doing this work?

  2. I’ve seriously seen workers on top of the scaffolding one day in the last 3 years. What an awful waste of time.

  3. This is such a problem on many levels. Not just the school, which to me is egregious and dangerous for the kids, but the entire city. There is no way it needs to be up that long. Something isnt getting done either on the school side or the DB side. I would love to figure this out. I am happy to meet with folks and organize as necessary on this issue generally. When I have asked City people and some fairly high up I get the biggest brush off kick the can response (and thats from friends). So something is up. sharing my email here if anyone wants to coordinate efforts on this shed and any others generally. If someone knows more, please share. Its bad enough we try to welcome tourists to the eyesore and 10x worse that it creates a hazard for kids

    • This is an object lesson for all the people who demand the City “do something” about all the scaffolding around private buildings. The City cannot expedite its own projects.

    • My understanding is this is a DOE project, and the school has no say on how/when the work is to be done.