Pushed Out of Our Neighborhood

Dear El Barrio Unite Membership & East Harlem Residents,

We hope that all of you are doing well and are in the best of spirits. The enclosed article points out what we have been saying all along about our fears while everyone else lent their faith in a system that is corrupt to its bones, offering nothing to the lower income households of East Harlem.  Who will be accountable for what little they have settled for while so many families with great need of a safe, decent place to live have been discounted from participating in simply because they had insufficient representation?… 

Check out our attached PowerPoint presentation on our archives that highlights the displacement caused by the 2003 rezoning of East Harlem, with available information from the Regional Planning Association- RPA, who also just let out their excellent March, 2017 Report “Pushed Out: Housing Displacement in an Unaffordable Region” featuring Ray “Last Man Out” on page 19: http://library.rpa.org/pdf/RPA-Pushed-Out-Housing-Displacement-in-an-Unaffordable-Region.pdf

Members and friends, kindly share our response with all your friends and contacts because this fight for Affordable Housing in East Harlem/ NYC is happening now, and we must all demand an active participation for all households- not just the richest, but to the poor and very poorest.  What sense does it make to give away our available city land resources while receiving the most minimal benefit from it all.  This shameful action must be stopped with a furious opposition to the Mayor’s Rezoning Plan, and his subsequent MIH Plan like what we instigated back in November, 2015 when CB11 voted these down. But that the CB11 Chairperson decided not to report this vote to the Manhattan Borough President, so our local concerns were never counted into the record as it should have been and was expect to be. Actually, not one single Community Board ever supported these plans, yet the Mayor, some City Council members and some of our own community groups are acting as it is a fait complei in favor of a scam that will not be soon forgotten when the community wakes up to this travesty.  Don’t be fooled. Beware of Geeks bearing gifts!

El Barrio Unite PowerPoint: http://www.elbarriounite.org/east-harlem-cannot-afford-rezoning-powerpoint/

East River Plaza Fact Sheet

El Barrio Unite East River Plaza Expansion Fact Sheet                                    03/09/2015

Who is El Barrio Unite? A newly formed organization of concerned New Yorkers centered in East Harlem.

Mission: To protect the residents of the East Harlem from predatory developers that threaten the decay of the community and living environment through gentrification, displacement, tax increases, exploitation and greed.

As a community based group in East Harlem that is openly opposed to the East River Plaza Residential Development (ERPRD) project (project ID # P2014M0466) proposed by the developers Blumenfeld Development Group (BDG) and Forest City Ratner (FCR).

What is the East River Plaza Expansion? Tiago Holdings, LLC under the development groups, Blumenfeld Development Group and Forest City Ratner, propose the construction of three residential towers on the existing East River Plaza shopping complex. The proposal would include approximately 1,000-1,200 residential towersIIunits of which 20-25% would be affordable housing units, according to their application. The towers would have approximately 32-47 stories and would rise between 320-470 feet above the platform, connected through a series of skyways equipped with residential amenity space and features. The towers require a number of rezoning and mapping changes that require permits.

Who are the Developers? Blumenfeld Development Group:  Edward Blumenfeld who runs the development group has been developing retail, commercial, industrial, and residential projects in New York, New Jersey, and Florida for over three decades.

His personal and professional relationship with crook, Bernie Madoff is highly questionable. According the Bloomberg News, Blumenfeld invested about $140 million with Madoff across 38 accounts, even an $11 million transfer from Madoff a few days before his arrest.

Forest City Ratner has a pattern of making promises to local communities that they will generate jobs, housing, economic development, and tax revenues but do not follow through on those promises. In 2004, FCE promised to deliver 10,000 permanent jobs and 2,250 affordable housing units in the 22 acre Atlantic Yards project in Brooklyn in return for $270 million direct subsidies to construct the Barclays Center. Purchasing the land for the project at less than half-price and other land through eminent domain, FCE has completed the Barclays Center but has not completed the affordable housing units and has only created 1,900 part time jobs.

What are the community’s concerns? Gentrification, Displacement, Public safety, Environment, Asthma, Public Health, Rent increases, Tax increases, Decreased sun light for community garden, Education/schools, Disruption of commerce and labor at East River Plaza, Reduced services, Land use zoning, Flood zone, Tax breaks and subsidies to the developer, Quality of life, Tax abatements and government subsidies without benefits to the community

What Can I do to help? Tell your friends and neighbors and invite them to an El Barrio Unite meeting. Like and Follow El Barrio Unite on Facebook and visit www.elbarriounite.org for more information.