The plan coincides with the revival of the possible shelter at 78-16 Cooper Avenue in Glendale, which the School Construction Authority is working to turn into a state-of-the-art school.
Some locals see this as a “swap,” taking the special-needs students out of the crummy facility at PS 9 and putting them in a nicer, new building in Glendale. In return, residents fear, the city will have their homeless shelter in Maspeth.
Councilman Bob Holden has publicly denied this. Instead, he sees them as two separate problems, and wants to work with the city on a faith-based shelter plan instead.
In an online newsletter, Holden said the Department of Homeless Services still intends to place a shelter in District 30, which spans Glendale, Ridgewood, Middle Village and Maspeth.
“Discussions with these city agencies are ongoing and no final determinations have been made,” he wrote, “but I am diligently working to come up with the best solution for the entire district.”
Other elected officials, including Assemblywoman Cathy Nolan, who represents the industrial area covering PS 9, are opposed to the administration’s plan to put a shelter there.
State Senator Michael Gianaris, whose district also covers this area, also released a statement against the proposal.
“I urge the city to reconsider its decision and develop a more comprehensive and rational approach to this issue,” he said.