From the Times Newsweekly:
Those in attendance asked about the possibility of opening a new supermarket in the area, eyeing the former site of a Rite Aid pharmacy at the corner of Metropolitan Avenue and Tonsor Street as a prime location. Prior to becoming a drug store, it was noted, the location had been a Key Food supermarket.
Attendees said they had heard conflicting rumors that the site would instead be developed into condominiums. Crowley indicated that since the site is commercially zoned, such a project would require the owners of the site to secure a zoning variance, which must undergo a public review process.
According to MWEBA President Kathy Hamilton, the idea of building a new supermarket at the Rite Aid site was raised previously at a civic meeting last year. Representatives of then-State Sen. Serphin Maltese had stated they would reach out to a local supermarket chain in the hope of opening a new franchise locally.
But since the senator was voted out of office last November, Hamilton said, those plans seemingly went by the wayside. Nevertheless, residents in attendance at last Thursday's meeting stressed the need for opening a new retailer in the neighborhood.
Carolina Gill, a spokesperson for Assemblywoman Markey, said that the legislator would reach out to her colleague in the State Assembly, Catherine Nolan, regarding soliciting a grocery store chain to come to the Maspeth/Ridgewood area. Even so, she noted, it would likely be difficult to lure a potential client into the area due to the current economic crisis.
Gill suggested that the organization launch a petition drive and gather signatures of local residents to demonstrate to supermarket chains the community's desire for a new grocery store.
Regardless of the concerns, Crowley stated that she would reach out to supermarket chains to discuss the possible opening of a new location in the Maspeth area. The fact that any potential residential development would require the owners to secure a variance provides "all the more reason" to build a grocery store there and slow the development of condominiums.
These people need to become more in touch with their communities. We have a bunch of elected officials who have no idea what is going on in their districts and are dumb as door nails.
With respect to zoning, Crowley doesn't know what the hell she is talking about because the corner of Tonsor (as well as the rest of that stretch of Metropolitan Avenue) is zoned R6B (with a C2-4 overlay).
The Rite Aid site on Metropolitan Avenue was suggested as a potential location for a school by CEC24. In fact, Elizabeth Crowley was at the meeting when the SCA's Mary Leas talked about the site as one the agency is interested in.
So why are these nimrods misleading their constituents by yammering on about a supermarket?