In response to the wave of real estate speculation threatening the South Bronx and that will open the doors to hyper-gentrification, we present below a Statement of Principles on Private Development. These principles have been in the making for upwards of a year by members of the Mott Haven-Port Morris Community Land Trust (in consultation with experts in each area) in response to the decades of “development” without community engagement that has caused a health epidemic and now threatens mass displacement. As some of our elected officials choose to deny the existence of gentrification, many developers have already bought land, filed plans and erected buildings “as of right”, and many are not requesting any zoning changes, variances or government subsidies that would trigger wider accountability. Over the coming weeks, members of the community will be assessing adherence to these principles of each developer – from Carnegie, Cheskel Schwimmer and Chetrit to Hornig, JCAL, Savanna and Somerset, among many others – and sharing the information publicly so that we can best direct the breadth of efforts to protect and uplift our community.
Tag: Mott Haven
It was up for barely a month yet it made headlines around the world and now it’s gone—the Piano District billboard has been replaced with an innocuous ice cream ad.
The billboard display heralding the coming of luxury waterfront living and a rebranding of a neighborhood while promising to bring in “world class dining, fashion, and art” for many was a sign that gentrification was coming in and fast.
The Bronx may be the greenest borough, with almost 25% of its land dedicated to parks, but residents in The South Bronx do not have equitable access to green spaces. Now that The Randall’s Island Connector—after 2 decades of wrangling with city agencies and community advocacy groups—area residents and the rest of the borough have access to an additional 330 acres of parkland.
The $6 million connector, which only stretches for a quarter mile under the Amtrak line from 132nd Street to Bronx Kill, is now paved with bike and pedestrian lanes so that Bronxites can enjoy the wide open spaces which Randall’s Island provides along with the many playing fields.
The South Bronx Farmers Market located at E 138th Street at Alexander Avenue right next to St. Jerome’s in Mott Haven, which started operating last year, has just been awarded United States Department of Agriculture grant of $40,717.13!
This is amazing and a testament to the hard work the community has put into making sure there is access to healthy foods in our neighborhood as well as connect our communities with our local farmers.
Developers Somerset Partners and the Chetrit Group who are planning as many as six 25 story residential market rate towers (of which 3 have already been filed with the Department of Buildings for construction) has put up a new billboard proclaiming the area of Port Morris as the ‘Piano District’.
The billboard is prominently aimed at Manhattan and drivers who are heading home to the posh suburbs of Westchester County and Connecticut as they head on home, easily viewing the sign.
The billboard promises, luxury waterfront living, world-class dining, fashion, art, and architecture in a neighborhood where the majority are living well below the poverty line and are fighting for their very lives as they suffer health disparities disproportionately more than others across the city.
In a pro-gentrification piece written by The New York Times, it was announced by one of the developers of the three 25 story residential towers (of 6) planned for the South Bronx Harlem River waterfront, that 1 bedrooms would rent for a mind-blowing $3,750.
Barely a year since we reported properties on either side of the Third Avenue Bridge approach were purchased for obscene and speculative amounts, three of the lots have had recent plans filed for three 25 story residential towers which, if approved, will bring what appears to be 1,661 market rate units to the area.
Thanks to community residents from Port Morris and Mott Haven in The South Bronx—along with local institutions, community based organizations and businesses—the vision for a sustainable waterfront and access to it by local residents has taken one leap closer to becoming reality and as soon as a 2017 groundbreaking.
Let’s face it: We already knew that developers were going to set their eyes on The Bronx, often called “The Last Frontier” by real estate developers and moguls due to The South Bronx’s proximity to Manhattan and excellent transportation network but as speculative purchases are made on properties far more than their actual worth, is it over for those trying to make a quick buck on our back?
198 E 135th Street, which was owned by storage company CubeSmart, was sold on May 12, 2015 for $15,470,000 to Deegan 135 Realty LLC.
Coming Soon: Bushwick…If We Let It.
The following is syndicated from CityLimits and is very appropriate and applicable to The Bronx as signs of gentrification continue to manifest itself in the South Bronx. Is this what Bronx residents have to look forward to as developers are given free reign by our politicians to come into our neighborhoods and development with rampant disregard?
New York City has become a sterile, cookie-cutter “suburban” city. Neighborhoods in Manhattan and many parts of Brooklyn no longer have a distinct character or are losing them and becoming more homogeneous. Is this what we really want to happen to The Bronx?
On Tuesday, May 5th, the South Bronx Overall Economic Development Corporation—better known as SoBro—held a “second” visioning session on the Special Harlem River Waterfront District to discuss the issues of developing the waterfront, residential, needs, and gentrification issues.
The reason I say second in quotes is because SoBro held a block party last year where they had a small station in a corner where they collected surveys about the waterfront yet that was never heavily promoted. Many residents were unaware that a “first” session had occurred.