Residents show concerns over NYCHA’s redevelopment plans
by Ricky Casiano
Apr 03, 2013 | 3164 views | 0 0 comments | 836 836 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Residents gathered recently in Boerum Hill to discuss how New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) redevelopment plans could affect the community.

NYCHA’s Infill Redevelopment Plan would allow developers to build luxury housing on parking lots, playgrounds and other open space in 12 developments citywide, including four in Brooklyn.

“There is a fire sale that is taking place,” said longtime housing resident John Winter. “It’s happening in our libraries, schools, and in housing.”

The local public housing group Families United for Racial and Economic Equality, of FUREE, State Senator Velmanette Montgomery, and Councilman Stephen Levin led the meeting at the YWCA in Boerum Hill.

“I am here to support you and am very committed to the NYCHA community,” said Levin. “We just have to stay together and protect what we have.”

NYCHA’s controversial plan is meant to raise revenue to fill their budget gap and help pay for the backlog of repairs on public housing complexes, but housing residents are concerned they could lose valuable open space and their affordable housing.

Residents, largely from the Gowanus, Ingersoll, Whitman and Farragut Houses, say they have already noticed surveyors looking at their buildings.

“We need to stop NYCHA from privatizing public housing,” said FUREE member Diana Smith. “We cannot afford the buildings they are building on our grounds.”

The plans need approval from the city and are not final. NYCHA hopes to gain $30 to $50 million annually from long-term leases on its properties.

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