In an article in the Staten Island Advance, it was noted that the Economic Development Corp. released a Request for Expressions of Interest (RFEI) for the purchase and redevelopment of the Department of Sanitation Garage in New Brighton. This garage has been a thorn in the side of the neighborhood for over fifty years. Elected officials and neighborhood activists have long considered the garage an environmental blight on the community and stumbling block to any plans to revitalize the Jersey Street corridor. In the winter, the Sanitation trucks idle for hours in the neighborhood awaiting the starting pistol to "move the plows" when the snow hits the pavement. Pedestrians are forced to walk on the street as trucks block walk-ways. In the summer, the smell of garbage permeates the densely populated residential neighborhood.
In 2010, a rally was held at the site and was attended by over 250 community, religious and political leaders. Through a deal brokered by Councilwoman Debi Rose, Sanitation borough chief Ralph Reed agreed to move 20 trucks and 40 workers from the garage to the former Fresh Kills Landfill. The removal of said trucks and workers did occur; recently, however, it was noted by residents that over the ensuing years, the once removed trucks have again been brought back to the New Brighton garage.
As part of the pitch to developers in the RFEI, the Jersey Street location is noted as less than a mile from where hundreds of millions of investment dollars are being spent on developing the Wheel/Outlets complex, the Lighthouse development, the redevelopment of the former Stapleton Home Port site and the building of the new Supreme Court complex in St. George.
Zoning of the 114,700 sq. ft. site would allow 3-4 story attached houses or small apartments in addition to commercial stores. The deadline to submit proposals to the EDC is April 23.
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