A group of South Bronx auto shop owners could soon be without a home

Cooperative protesting looming eviction over unpaid rent

(Credit: Jorge Royan)
(Credit: Jorge Royan)

A group of auto-repair owners are in danger of getting evicted from their industrial building in the South Bronx.

Roughly 15 members of the group, called the Sunrise Cooperative, staged a rally outside of their building at 1080 Leggett Avenue, which was intended to house 45 auto-repair businesses that had been pushed out of Willets Point in Queens, according to the Wall Street Journal.

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The cooperative signed a lease on the building more than three years ago, but work on it is still incomplete. The group has filed for bankruptcy protection, and their landlord David Smetana could evict them as soon as next week for unpaid rent.

Members have called on the city to help stop their pending eviction, but the Economic Development Corporation said it has already provided $7.5 million worth of economic assistance to the group and cannot stop the eviction. A spokeswoman for the agency told the Journal she was “deeply disappointed” that the landlord was trying to evict the co-op. [WSJ]Eddie Small