Jennifer Lopez free concert raises concerns over traffic on City Island in the Bronx

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Sandy Kenyon reports on the upcoming free Jennifer Lopez in the Bronx but City Island residents are not happy. (WABC)

Jennifer Lopez is expected to draw a huge crowd when she returns to the Bronx for a free concert Wednesday night.

She will perform 10 minutes away from where she grew up, at Orchard Beach in Pelham Bay Park.

And there are growing concerns about the chaos and problems the concert will cause.

A famous writer once said "You can't go home again", and Lopez is learning it can be tougher than it looks.

Her plan to stage a free concert in the Bronx has angered those who live and work very close to the site of Wednesday evening's show.

For the superstar who used to be "Jenny From the Block" in the Bronx, the idea for a free concert in Pelham Bay Park near where she grew up seems like a great idea.

"It's going to be awesome to come back to the Bronx and do a concert for free for the neighborhood that raised me," Lopez said.

By the time Lopez appeared in the Bronx Sunday, 25,000 free tickets had already been distributed for the show.

"I think they'll have a great time, I think it's a great idea," said one resident. ('And what about traffic?') "Traffic will be a nightmare," he said.

And local residents are upset they weren't informed of the concert, until it was a done deal.

"Not to notify City Island of what was coming was I think a mistake. Nobody knows this island better than City Islanders, we know the ebb and flow of traffic," said Bill Stanton, president of the City Island Civic Association.

He sent a letter to the Parks Department and the NYPD, complaining about possible congestion on the single access bridge to the island, which is near the concert site.

"In our opinion this is grossly unfair", his letter says, "and steps must be made to rectify this situation."

Police Commissioner Bill Bratton responded this way: "We will do everything to accommodate both the concert as well as the safety of the people on City Island," said Bratton.

But those who work there and own local businesses are especially upset.

"I think there are a lot of negatives. I said I think it'd be better if they did it at a place that can handle that kind of traffic," said Jeff Weiner of the Sea Shore Restaurant.

One lane of traffic on City Island Road will be designated for concert-goers, and 100 officers will be at various checkpoints, making sure everyone going in has tickets.

The MTA is providing extra service for concert-goers.

MTA bus information:
Beginning at 3:00 p.m. on Wednesday, June 4, New York City Transit will operate a Special Event Shuttle bus between the Pelham Park 6 line subway station and Orchard Beach.

A special bus stop will be set up at Orchard Beach for departing customers. Customers will not swipe to board the bus when leaving Orchard Beach after the concert. Their fare will be captured when they transfer to a subsequent mode of service at Pelham Bay Park. The Special Event Shuttle bus service will run until all customers have left the Orchard Beach Park area.

Signs will be posted in advance at the Bx12 Pelham Bay Park bus stop, and aboard Bx12 buses to notify customers of the one day service suspension. The following NYC Transit and MTA Buses may also be affected by reroutes or delays: Bx5, Bx12, Bx12 SBS, Bx23, Bx24, Bx29 and Q20.

Customers should check for Current Service Status

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entertainmententertainmentconcertjennifer lopezbronx newssandy kenyonPelham BayNew York City
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