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Local Community Seeks To Honor Longtime Advocate With Street Naming

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April 25, 2016 By Michael Florio

The Jackson Heights community is seeking to honor a longtime local advocate by naming a street after her.

Community Board 3 voted unanimously last Thursday in favor of dubbing 34th Avenue between 93rd and 94th Streets “Mary Vavruska Way.”

Mary Vavruska, a neighborhood activist and member of a many community groups, passed away last July.

Vavruska was a member of Community Board 3 from 1971 to 1986, at one point serving as its Chair. During her time she oversaw the approval of the construction of the Delta Terminal at LaGuardia Airport and the Marriott Hotel, insisting on both providing local jobs, according to a letter written by Council Member Daniel Dromm.

She also helped bring the 115th Precinct to its current location.

“She initiated the building of the 115th Police Precinct on Northern Boulevard and maintained dialogue with officials regarding safety and quality of life issues for the neighborhood,” the letter reads.

Vavruska was also involved with schools, serving as the President of the PTA at both PS 92 and PS 149. In addition, she helped lead the charge to build IS 227 in Jackson Heights, Dromm’s letter states.

“Without my mom there would be no IS 227,” her son Charles Vavruska said at CB 3’s meeting last week.

Vavruska was also involved in other community advocacy groups such as the Jackson Heights Community Corp., the Jackson Heights/Elmhurst Kehillah, and the Jackson Heights Civic Association.

“This is a wonderful and appropriate honor,” Charles said.

Dromm will now draft legislation that will be presented to the City Council later this year. If approved, the street will officially be called “Mary Vavruska Way.”

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