Apparently back in the day there was an Emergency Assistance Unit on the site up until 2005 when it was knocked down. Needless to say, it effected the neighborhood negatively. One resident said she was never able to let her young daughter play outside because prostitutes and drug dealers were lurking in the area.
So at a time when the hood is experiencing a pretty serious resurgence, residents are understandably concerned with the seemingly imminent arrival of this shelter. They say the Department of Homeless Services never consulted with the neighborhood as they were moving forward with their plans.
Residents have formed a group called the South Bronx Community Organization to formally express their displeasure with the possible negative effects that this shelter will have on the nabe.
BoogieDowner's Take: Kudos to the Bronx residents who have formed the South Bronx Community Organization. There is power in numbers, and SBCA is an inspiring step forward to fight this battle, and any other subsequent community issues that may arise. As for DHS, hindsight is 20/20. Obviously they should have be much more proactive from the infancy of this project to work alongside the community instead of implementing these plans under a veil of secrecy.
Do you live in the Walton Avenue/150th Street area and want your voice heard? There will be a public hearing tomorrow (Thursday 9/25) at 7 p.m. at Hostos Community College in the Savoy Multi-Purpose Room, on the second floor of 120 E. 149th St. Robert Hess, DHS commissioner, will be at the hearing, along with other city officials.