Olnick Organization tries to win support for Lenox Terrace expansion

The Olnick Organization, owner of Harlem’s Lenox Terrace, which is home to Gov. David Patterson and Harlem Rep. Charles Rangel, is attempting once again to win tenant support for a plan that would almost double the size of the complex. Olnick first developed the plan in 2003, but it never got off the ground as a result of tenant opposition and a weak economy.

The complex was constructed by Olnick in 1958 on three square blocks between Fifth and Lenox avenues from 132nd to 135th streets. The six buildings currently house 1,700 units. According to the Wall Street Journal, Olnick aims to build six new apartment towers, renovate the complex’s retail space and turn asphalt parking lots into grassy fields.

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Tenants are still general opposed to the new construction, which they fear will block their views and lead to rent hikes.

“We are overwhelmingly and vehemently opposed to the notion to doubling the population in this three-square-block area,” said Delsenia Glover, president of the Lenox Terrace Association of Concerned Tenants.

Olnick President Bruce Simon said the new buildings would be a mix of low-rise and high-rise buildings and would not block views. He was also eager to point out that the retail revamp would create 1,000 new jobs in the local community. [WSJ]