Friday, July 18, 2008

Willets Point coalition grows

With Five New Members, Coalition Represents Majority of Land Ownership

The Willets Point Industry and Realty Association (WPIRA), the group of land and business owners fighting the Bloomberg Administration's attempt to steal their property through abuse of eminent domain, today announced that five new businesses have joined the coalition. As a result of these additions, the coalition now represents more than 53 percent of the private land owned in Willets Point despite the Bloomberg Administration's attempts to divide the community.

"Our resolve is stronger than ever, and our numbers are growing larger despite the city's weak attempts to divide us," said Thomas Mina, a member of WPIRA. "With these new members, our coalition now represents more than 53 percent of the private property in Willets Point. That should send a clear message to this administration that we will never allow them to take our property just so they can give it to a politically-connected developer. This should also send a clear message to all those in Queens who think they can roll over us. This fight will never end until they stop trying to destroy our businesses, steal our land and kill the American dreams of our parents and grandparents."

Council Member Diana Reyna said, "The city must acknowledge the increasing number of business and landowners opposing their redevelopment plan. The City's lack of consideration for the hundreds of small businesses and their thousands of employees at Willets Point is a direct contradiction to their vowed commitment to protect and retain industrial and manufacturing businesses in NYC. The city is betraying and turning their backs on these hard-working men and women and their families."

The five new coalition members are St. John Enterprises, United Steel Products, Shea Auto Repair, Trading Used Auto Parts and Empire Group and represent more than 120,000 square feet of land. With the additions, coalition members now cover 24 acres of the approximately 45 acres of privately owned land in Willets Point -- or more than 53 percent of the land. Each of the businesses have long-standing ties to Willets Point, including St. John's Enterprises with 36 years in the same location.

Georgiou Charalambos, co-owner of Shea Auto Repair for 28 years said, "I am in jail with the city. I don't know what to do. I can't move, I can't sell my property. I'm 66 years old and I want to retire, but I am stuck. No one from the EDC has talked to me. They just the want the property."

Alfredo Franza, vice president of United Steel, a family business with 50 employees, said, "With Community Board 7 and the Queens Borough President supporting this takeover plan, we know that we have a fight ahead and we felt it was important to show a united front with our neighbors."

Queens Borough President Helen Marshall is expected to announce her formal support of the administration's development scheme in the coming weeks, despite the strong turnout by WPIRA members and employees at a recent hearing at Borough Hall. Several WPIRA members testified at the hearing, to combat the city's campaign of misinformation to get approval on the redevelopment project without a formal plan or identification of a developer.

"Helen Marshall should do the right thing and stand with the property owners and the working families of Willets Point and reject this plan," said Jerry Antonacci, WPIRA member. "At the very least, she should show some independence and make clear that her support is contingent on the city agreeing to not use eminent domain to take private property. Unfortunately, Marshall has continued the city's long neglect of Willets Point and refused to provide us with basic city services such as sanitary sewers despite the property tax bills we pay year after year. Hope springs eternal, so we call again on Marshall to side with working families over powerful developers."


Anonymous said...

I'm a little confused. Isn't Marshall supposed to represent the people of Queens and their interests? Why does she back Bloomie?

To Bloomie:

Put some $$$ into the Willets Point infrastructure, you faggot. The place will then fix itself.


You suck
You suck
You suck

Anonymous said...

um, I'm sorry but i think "Willets Point" sucks, (the actual Willets Point is the peninsula where Fort Totten is located) its a bunch of junk yards for god sakes. Bloombergs plan is stupid, the best option is for the state/city to buy the land and turn it into a park, just like Robert Moses had intended years ago. (One of the few times he might have been right)

Anonymous said...

"its a bunch of junk yards"

These words were typed by an ignorant fool. There are non automotive-related businesses which employ thousands of people at Willets Point. The city only wants you to see the car shops and the blight they caused.

Anonymous said...

I do support Bloombergs plan. Willets Point junk yard sucks. All I see is dirt and poor infrastructures with illegal workers(cash only biz). Get them out of there and build a better working environment.

TaxpayingDad said...

For eveyone who is upset about Bloomberg takeing over the properties, suck it up, there isn't a thing you can do. Superman could stop a speeding train but not the political steamroller driven by Bloomberg. I have to agree with most of the people of the city, it's a filthy nasty place you wouldn't want your family to be stuck in. It was just a matter of time before the city decided to do something with it. The owners of the businesses affected did nothing improve the area but when the city got involved they all cried FOUL and started crying to the newspapers. No one can argue that the area needs a good facelift.

Queens Crapper said...

"The owners of the businesses affected did nothing improve the area"

1) Why would the owners be expected to do what they pay taxes to have the city do for them?
2) When they did try to repair the streets themselves, they got fined by the city
3) They did environmental remediation on their properties and paid out of their own pockets. That ain't cheap.

Anonymous said...

They need to rent billboards along the highways and really go after the communtiy board, both Beeps, and the local politicans.

Tell the world what bastards they be.

Start to educate the public and in doing so, start to build a wedge between myth and reality.

Anonymous said...

I hope they give Shulman a good enema!

But please point her towards Manhattan when she's ready to unload!

We've already got enough crap in Queens!

Anonymous said...

Remember the adage, "Starve a cold and feed a fever"?

starve an area (of infrastructure & services) and feed the fever eminent domain proceedings!

Even Mao cloaked his land grabs
in China with much more sophisticated rhetoric than "blighted"!

stop the abuse at the point said...

sounds like a few parkside members are online doing some of evans dirty work in trying to brainwash the people. you see we all agree that willets point looks like shit,but how did it get like that? if we didn't pave main street and clogged all the sewers so they didn't work and then stopped all services like sanitation ect,ect and stop all enforcement (like sanitation cops , building code ) what would main street look like after 30 years? i would think like willets point. now you know all the whores in flushing would be screaming where's my services that i paid for ( just like willets point did ,there are return letters to prove this )and they would get back their sevices and street sweepers would again be swweping and dot would be paving and dep would put the sewers in. then you have to ask yourself why didn't this happen like this at willets point? because its be a plan since manes to blight the area to take it and thats the crime here not an illegal getting paid cash , that someone could do this and then turn around and say look at this great plan and try and be a hero now is a crime, and everyone who says that willets point never complained take your head out of your ass there are plenty of documented meetings where donald manes said pack up your all out and claire shulman saying i have better plans for the place . im not giving you sewers. thats the crime!! not an illegal getting cash or that businesses didn't complain thats a "smoke and mirrors" campain to get everyone off the real story of " who blighted willets point and why are they now trying to profit from it"

Anonymous said...

Everything eventually boils down to $$$$$$. If NYC wants this area re-done, pay the people what they want (and deserve) and move forward. Stop the posturing and the (borderline) criminal and illegal methods to try and 'screw' them. Mr. Mayor, they will sue the City and the costs will be staggering. End the bullshit and give them what they WANT. If necessary, ask your pal Wilpon to shoulder some of the cost.

dicks at parkside said...

barry godindick you can stop trying to lobby everyone. try lobbying claire shulman and ask why she stood by and didn't invest a dime in willets point!! why? now thats the story

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

In typical NYC fashion the two sides are escalating rather then compromising. It is clear that "Wilitts Point" businesses serve a community need. But also they are in a place now better used for recreation.
Why doesn't the city find a suitable space nearby (say in College Point where there are still large unbuilt spaces) and help relocate them en masse.

Queens Crapper said...

"But also they are in a place now better used for recreation."

Recreation? They want to build a hotel, luxury condos and a convention center here. What recreation?

what a workout said...

"But also they are in a place now better used for recreation yes they are !! just imagine the work out claire shulman and her cronies will have counting the money they stole from the land owners they neglected for 30 years. myra herce can play the joker with her lovely red lipsick and helen marshall can play 2 face what a cast

no recreation please said...

recreation? yeah counting all the money they stole from neglected land owners is all the recreation that will be done there . there might be a claireman movie with myra herce as the joker(with her red lipstick and ugly face) and helen marshall as 2 face what a cast of crooks . the movie will be produced by evan(mommy's boy ) stavinsky