Stagg, DHS finalize 5731 Broadway

Posted

It’s official. 

Kingsbridge residents will welcome new neighbors sooner rather than later as the highly touted — and hotly contested — contract between developer Stagg Group, Praxis Housing Initiatives, and the city to open a transitional homeless facility at 5731 Broadway was finally signed last week.

 There is still no word, though, on when exactly the 83 homeless families will move into the new building, originally intended for market-rate housing. But signs indicate that move-in day is fast approaching. 

Some northwest Bronx residents posted on social media last week they saw Stagg employees moving furniture into the apartment building, which is made up of 53 one-bedroom, 12 two-bedroom and 18 studio apartments. 

Although no one from Stagg was available for comment, Isaac McGinn of the city’s homeless services department told The Riverdale Press he was excited to get the ball rolling to bring in the displaced families — many of whom reportedly called Riverdale and Kingsbridge home before falling on tough times. 

“We are ensuring the building is ready for occupancy and completing final reviews,” he said. “We look forward to opening this location as soon as possible to give homeless families from this community and the Bronx the opportunity to get back on their feet.”

But it might not be all smiles from some northwest Bronxites, as the opening of the transitional housing facility will likely come much to the chagrin of a number of its opponents, including local elected officials like Assemblyman Jeffrey Dinowitz and Councilman Andrew Cohen. 

Both have frequently spoken out against the placement of a shelter in Kingsbridge, at least partly because Stagg’s initial proposal to Community Board 8 said 5731 Broadway would be a mix of market-rate and affordable housing, and because nearby schools already are overcrowded. 

“We were the victims of a classic bait and switch,” Dinowitz said in July, when the plans for the building were first announced. “I am outraged at the city’s plan to convert a brand-new apartment building in Kingsbridge into a homeless shelter.”

CB8 as a group didn’t oppose having some sort of homeless services at the site. But some of the more prominent members, like land use chair Charles Moerdler felt the city would be better served with a permanent shelter rather than a transitional one. 

Most of the families, though, would stay for at least a year typically, McGinn said, noting it was similar to any family moving in for a one-year lease.

The city’s move to place homeless families into new buildings and developments, instead of packing them into shelters or hotels like the Van Cortlandt Motel is part of Mayor Bill de Blasio’s larger plan for tackling the growing homelessness problem throughout New York. With the opening of 5731 Broadway, homeless department officials said Van Cortlandt Motel’s units would be vacated, removing one regular complaint from those in the neighborhood when it comes to homelessness.

Since de Blasio took office in 2014, the number of families staying in shelters has jumped from 12,880 monthly to 15,315 in August, according to the Coalition for the Homeless. That’s a more than 24 percent increase — and those figures have actually dropped from their peak of 15,899 last November. 

The problem of homelessness has proven difficult to solve, especially since the mayor’s plan to open up new facilities has typically been met with resistance, like in Norwood where the owner of a popular carpet store, Sam’s Floor Covering, was reportedly in talks to build a homeless shelter above the decades old business. 

But it seems, for now, the staunch opponents of 5731 Broadway will have to adjust to life with their new neighbors. 

Comments

4 comments on this story | Please log in to comment by clicking here
Please log in or register to add your comment
Jack Ira Warshaw

Not surprised. That is why New York City's politicians are a bunch of liars and thieves. Efrain Gonzales Jr., Pedro EspadaJ Jr., Naomi Riveria (alleged), Sheldon Silver, Joseph Bruno are prime examples. A cesspool of crappy people and that is why I have NO faith that any promises made will be kept. Put Bully d'Blassio on the list - 2 townhouses owned and rented out at $5000 per month and Not one homeless family sheltered while he lives at Gracie Mansion for free.

Friday, October 20
Democrap 4 life

A local plumbing contractor when he found out what Mark Stagg was doing he with drew all his permits SHAME ON HIM

We democraps want to have predators in our mist to prove how "liberal " we are and we could care less if our children are beaten up and their phones and bicycles are taken away as voted to "share the wealth" and bring in "citizens of the world " to sponge off American tax payers.

BRAVO Liberals you got exactly what you asked for with or amazing politicians the very best money can buy or rent

Funny how we democraps are like HELLery with selective amnesia when ever we have a democrap mayor this always seems to happen.

The good old days when Dinkings had corruption and incompetence and it took Rudy years to bring the city back.

The last thing we demcraps need is a republican mayor or a republican in politics as they will not tolerate people saying " I cant find a job"

If someone can ask in English "would you like fries with that order sir" there are jobs available but we democraps rather keep people in modern day shackles so they continue to vote for the democratic party that had them as slaves and still do by keeping them in housing paid by the tax payers and giving them food stamp and for 3 generations it has worked to keep my democrap leaders in power

Saturday, October 21
CelticWoman

It's official. There goes the neighborhood.

I truly feel sorry for those living in the area, especially homeowners.

Friday, October 27
MobRulez

Kingsbridge was such a great neighborhood when I was growing up. Actually, it still is but not the same. That's when everyone owned their homes, knew and made friends with everyone on the block, children playing in the streets with other kids on the block, we weren't afraid to walk around anywhere.

Now, things have changed a bit. You see all kinds of strange people. Landlords renting their houses, basements to whoever pays the rent. Don't get me wrong, 80% still care! We love our neighborhood!

The good thing is the rent is still high which helps keep out most of the riff raff. :)

Some issues are also slumlords who rent to Manhattan College students which are also ruining the neighborhoods with late night partying and noise! 3605 and 3644 Corlear is one of those places.

Anyway, 5731 will be a problem if the homeless zombies start walking around the neighborhood looking for ways to profit from us. If I see any one that doesn't belong, there is an ole expression, "Shoot first, ask questions later!" I know some idiot will say I'm racist or something.. But we were here first, We pay our taxes, own our homes and don't need people that don't care around here!! Hey, it's so crazy that if you have money, you have to pay bills and if you don't, you get food stamps, free health care and a free apartment at 5731! Hey De Blasio, get a clue!!

Sunday, October 29