The Real Deal New York

De Blasio: Scaffolds at public housing are coming down

Temporary structures seen as providing cover for criminal activity

August 28, 2014 08:00AM

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From left: Bill de Blasio, Lincoln Houses in East Harlem and Al Sharpton

From left: Bill de Blasio, Lincoln Houses in East Harlem and Al Sharpton

Mayor Bill de Blasio announced Wednesday that his administration had made progress on its vow to remove a public nuisance from the city’s housing projects: scaffolding.

Critics of the lingering scaffolding and construction sheds say they provide cover for illicit activity and provide criminals with hiding spots for firearms. At a press conference at East Harlem’s Lincoln Houses, the mayor said that about 13,000 feet of scaffolding had been torn down and the city would follow suit on another 30,000 feet by the spring, Crain’s reported.

The city aims to eliminate all scaffolding where construction is not active by 2015 and prevent construction sheds from sitting unused, according to the website.

Reverend Al Sharpton, who was in attendance, praised the administration for taking action, saying, “People in public housing should not be marginalized and ignored. I want to say that I’m very happy to see that the mayor kept his word in bringing these scaffolds down.” [Crain’s]Tom DiChristopher

  • trex

    Sharpton may look skinny now, but he is still a big fat liar. The Mayor is showing poor judgement giving this guy any press

  • Monica McLaughlin

    Rent stabilized tenants, including myself, who live in the landmark First Avenue Estate on First Avenue at 65th Street in the Upper East Side of Manhattan, have been harassed with a huge dilapidated scaffolding construction shed that has been up almost a decade with no work at all being done for at least 6 years. This shed, that surrounds 3 sides of 2 apartment buildings, was constructed with an open plenum to encourage the roosting of hundreds of pigeons. To make matters worse, the owners blocked the fire escape drop ladder exits through the shed ceiling with plywood to create an even gloomier slum-like look to the 2 buildings they have been trying to demolish via an LPC Hardship Application. The owners — The Stahl Organization — (founded by the late Stanley Stahl, left in trust to his widow Cherie Stahl and now run by co-Presidents Richard Czaja (who sits on the Board of Trusties of Catholic Charities USA with revenues of $ 4.39 billion dollars) and Gregg Wolpert (who sits on the SGI-USA Board of Directors) are due in Building Court on 9/4 for Class 1 and Class 2 building Violations # 35099395Y and # 35099394M because of failure to maintain the scaffolding and blocked fire escapes. Can anyone help us? Hello Mayor . ..

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