Saturday, August 11, 2012
Homeless shelter coming to Glendale?
I would like to inform you of the facts in regards to a proposed homeless shelter in Glendale.
The property in question, 78-16 Cooper Avenue, is owned by Wilner Realty Management LLC. Michael Wilner is an owner of the company and the site’s property manager. Mr. Wilner has confirmed to me that he has indeed been in contact with a Not-for-Profit agency that runs homeless shelters. He would not provide the name of the organization.
I do not support turning this site into a shelter.
NYC Department of Homeless Services (DHS) has a legal process that must be followed before any such site is approved. The process can take weeks, and in most cases months. The community board must be notified before an application begins, and Community Board 5 has not received any notification. Nonetheless, we should still be very concerned.
To be clear, DHS has not yet received a proposal.
The property is zoned M1-1 for manufacturing use, not residential use. This zone is meant to bring economic opportunity and services to the community. However, the land-use law allows for hotels in this zone, and unfortunately, the city has allowed the use of shelters for this zone before. But to give an occupancy certificate to a shelter in this location would be an inaccurate manipulation of the law and should be stopped.
The site should be developed to enrich the community. The neighboring and attached lot is currently under renovation by a local company named “Artistic Stitch.” The site under renovation is scheduled to open in the coming weeks as a community sports and recreation center.
Michael Wilner, the property owner at 78-16 Cooper Avenue, said that the building has been vacant for much of the past 20 years. He has not signed any agreement on leasing the approximately 70,000 sq. ft. of space and is willing to show the building to interested buyers.
Our office, along with the offices of the local elected officials of Glendale and Middle Village, will fight a proposed homeless shelter for 78-16 Cooper Avenue. We will also begin circulating a petition that makes it clear our community will not allow this type of development. Please keep in contact with my office at 718-366-3900 or email email@example.com for further details.