What We’re Doing
Partnering with the community to imagine and create a walkable, bikeable linear park that connects numerous communities and millions of people to the outdoors while generating economic, health, and climate benefits.
Repurpose a long-abandoned stretch of rail line to provide a safe, carbon-free transportation route for millions of New Yorkers.
In New York’s famed Queens borough, there’s a 3.5-mile stretch of abandoned railway that once ferried people across Jamaica Bay to the Rockaway Beach peninsula. Rather than letting it sit idle—as it has for nearly 60 years—we have the opportunity to revive this 47-acre area into a thriving green corridor called the QueensWay. This space is packed with potential and thanks to Mayor Eric Adams’s $35 million investment, we can now begin the process of turning these tracks into a flourishing greenway. It is poised to become an active transportation route for hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers, many of them kids who will enjoy a safer, greener route to and from school.
“When the QueensWay is completed, neighborhoods will be re-connected, air quality will be improved, and local businesses will get a much-needed boost,” says Friends of the QueensWay’s Travis Terry. “Rails-to-trails projects work and residents will finally have a safe and beautiful place to bike, jog, or take a stroll.”
We’re working with Friends of the QueensWay, community members, New York State, and New York City to bring this greenway to life. The pedestrian and bicycle pathway will connect the communities of Rego Park, Forest Hills, Richmond Hill, Glendale, Woodhaven, and Ozone Park. This would bring much-needed public green space, recreation areas, and opportunities for safe alternative commuting—all while providing community spaces to celebrate the cultural diversity of Queens.
“One of the benefits of the QueensWay is that it gives you the ability to go north or south, to school or from school, without having to cross a busy road. That’s something that any parent would want,” says Doug McPherson, a resident of South Ozone Park.
The threat of climate change means we need to tackle transportation emissions by supporting zero-carbon walking and biking transportation options. The QueensWay will allow people to connect to seven subway lines, a commuter rail station, and the Woodhaven bus rapid transit line. And it will be an important north-south link in the greenway network in Queens, connecting currently separated bike and pedestrian corridors throughout the city.
Friends of the QueensWay
Friends of the QueensWay (FQW) is a grassroots community organization—consisting mainly of Central and South Queens residents—this is advocating for the conversion of the long-abandoned, 3.5-mile, 47-acre Rockaway Beach Branch of the Long Island Rail Road into a family-friendly public park that can be enjoyed by bikers, walkers, joggers, visitors, tourists, workers, and residents in Queens. It is FQW’s intention to plan the reuse of this property in a way that not only creates an iconic park but also sparks economic and cultural development, improves quality of life and the environment, and provides greater access to all that Central Queens has to offer, including a direct, fast, and safe link to Forest Park.
In Their Words
“One of the benefits of the QueensWay is that it gives you the ability to go north or south, to school or from school, without having to cross a busy road. That’s something that any parent would want.” – Doug McPherson, a resident of South Ozone Park