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Sleepless on Bedford

The Brooklyn Paper
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Talk about road rage!

The steady banging noise of cars driving over a construction project has had a Flatbush woman pulling out her hair for the past two months — and no one seems to be able to fix it.

The city says a plumbing and heating company dug up the street on Bedford Avenue between Campus Road and Avenue I in late April to work on some underground pipes near Brooklyn College, but it never finished the job, covering the hole with sheets of metal instead of repaving — and the noise from passing cars is driving Ita Mermelstein nuts.

“I can’t go to sleep at night,” said Mermelstein, 37, who lives in front of the half-finished project. “I have a headache from the banging.”

Mermelstein said crews were digging up the streets for two days starting April 20. When they finished, they covered up the hole with four sheets of metal.

Since then, she has complained repeatedly to the city, community board and elected officials, but no one has finished the work.

In early May, contractors paved around the edges of the metal, but a passing fire truck soon knocked it loose. After another two weeks of insanity-inducing noise, crews returned and welded the metal down — but that didn’t hold either.

“They just can’t get their act together. It’s just unreal,” she said.

When asked about the problem, the city passed the buck, claiming it sent inspection crews to check the hole on Monday while stating that the contractor — and not the city — is responsible for fixing the problem.

Department of Transportation spokeswoman Nicole Garcia confirmed the city issued a permit to the contractor, but she did not know the name of the contractor or the type of work it was doing.

Meanwhile, Mermelstein is at wit’s end.

“You can’t just leave a hole there. People live here. I don’t know what they’re waiting for,” she said.

Updated 11:48 am, January 16, 2019
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