Wednesday, December 15, 2010
Park at St. Saviour's looking more likely
From the Daily News:
Talks to save a portion of the historic St. Saviour's property for parkland are heating up as the owner prepares to construct warehouses on the Maspeth site.
City Parks Commissioner Adrian Benepe told civic leaders last week his agency has been working with elected officials and the Department of Citywide Administrative Services to hash out a deal with Maspeth Development LLC, which owns the 1.5-acre property.
Supporters have been scrambling to pool together funds to buy the site. Queens Borough President Helen Marshall and City Councilwoman Elizabeth Crowley (D-Middle Village) have set aside more than $2 million.
"I am hopeful," said civic activist Christina Wilkinson, who has spearheaded efforts to preserve and save the site. "While there are talks, there is hope."
The flurry of calls and activity comes just days after owner Scott Kushnik got approvals from the Buildings Department to construct warehouses on a portion of the land, located at 57th Road and 58th St. "Even if we develop the site, the door is open," said Kushnik, who paid about $6 million for the site several years ago. "This isn't a lost cause."
Kushnik hit resistance when he tried to build housing on the property. He said he has been speaking with city officials but said their offers have been low. "I've been bleeding $30,000 a month here for four years," he said. "If I break even, I will be lucky."