Bronx CB 11 Chair Al D'Angelo Sends Alternate Site(s) to Mayor and DHS for Proposed Stillwell Avenue Adult Men's Shelter
On March 11th there was a proposal to Community Board 11 for a second two-hundred adult men's homeless shelter. This one is located at 1682 Stillwell Avenue to a height of six stories. The site is a closed former auto repair shop right next to a residential neighborhood, and one block from a highly successful charter school.
Opposition quickly grew to the second adult men's homeless shelter which would burden Community Board 11 with four hundred homeless adult men, more than half of the seven hundred total homeless population the board was told it is responsible for.
The Department of Homeless Services had a formula where no more than twenty-five percent of the total homeless population in a community board could be adult single men.
When the first adult Men's homeless shelter (at 1400 Blondell Avenue) was proposed the community asked that it be a family shelter instead of an adult single men's homeless shelter, and now they are being given a second adult men's shelter.
Mayor de Blasio answered a question of why the need for more single adult men's shelters by saying last year, with the new No Cash Bail law people are no longer being kept in jails when they could not pay bail, and the city now has more single adult homeless men.
In a letter to Mayor Bill de Blasio and Department of Homeless Services Commissioner Steve Banks, Dated Jan. 22, 2021 Bronx Community Board 11 Chair Al D'Angelo is proposing an alternate site to the proposal of a homeless shelter at 1682 Stillwell Avenue. Chair D'Angelo has come up with 1956 Birchall Avenue where a two-story building with cellar space would be constructed with the owner of the properties approval, in an M1 zoned lot that would not need any zoning change.
It is stated that the Birchall Avenue site is at the foot of an elevated subway station, not near any schools, or one family homes. It is further stated that this site would be less expensive and wind up saving the city close to one million dollars a year over the Stillwell Avenue proposed site.
There are other alternate sites also listed. This letter has also been sent to local city, state, and federal elected officials, the Governor, NY State Attorney General, all citywide elected officials, DHS, DSS, and the Lantern Community Services (the provider).
In a second letter of Intent it is stated that the owner of the Birchall Avenue site in CB 11 has a total of 23,013 square feet, and can be estimated to be 35,000 square feet with a cellar. Included is that the homeless shelter would meet all compliance with Part 494 of the OTDA regulations and that the owner of this alternate site would work with the provider the Lantern Corporation or any other non-profit provider the city chooses.
The letter of intent is signed by CB 11 Chair Al D'Angelo and the owner of the Birchall Avenue alternate site.