Greenpoint Photos Du Jour: Blight Me
“Blight Me” was a feature on the Gowanus Lounge I was both very fond of and had the dubious honor of making numerous contributions to. Before Robert Guskind’s untimely death I had planned to run the following either here or contribute it to his site. These photographs are therefore just over a week old. Not that anything has really changed at this location. Given the Department of Buildings inability and/or unwillingness to police death traps (such as the following) I suspect this eyesore (which hails from 156 India Street) will grace my fair ‘nabe for a very, very long time.
On March 4, 2009 The Queens Courier wrote:
The New York City Department of Buildings (DOB) might as well be renamed the Department of Blight. Blight is what they allow to exist in this city, blight is what they allow to be built in many Queens neighborhoods, and blight is what the DOB fails to remove and demolish even though they are the agency that can do just that.
This was written in reference to a house in Whitestone, Queens. However, it is equally applicable here in Greenpoint.
Case in point: 156 India Street. I have written about this building before. Its tenants were forced to evacuate this building and the tenement located behind it in May 2008 because they were deemed too dangerous for human habitation. Among the reasons cited were:
(HAZARDOUS) FAILURE TO MAINTAIN EXTERIOR BUILDING WALL. DEFECT IS:REAR WALL IS ROTTED,DEFECTIVE AND PULLING AWAY FROM WOOD FRAME. FIRE ESCAPE IS IN DANGER DUE TO AFFECTED REAR WALL AND COULD DISLODGE IF USED
It should also be noted that joists in the cellar were found to be rotted and it 45 degree angles.Â Inadequate fire-proofing in the cellar and around the boiler were also noted. The owner, Kevin Nealis, was ordered to make repairs. He has since been served a number of summons and notice for inspection.
With predictable results.
I have said it before and I will say it again.
What is the point of having rules and regulations…
if they are not enforced?
Taking a pro-active stance on buildings such as 156 India Street is not only a matter of principle; it is also protects the quality of life for the neighborhood as a whole. Derelict properties are a magnet for squatters, ne’er do wells and people whose intentions are anything but nice. What’s more, it’s bad for business.
Would you pay $1,800+ a month to have a balcony whose “scenic views” include this eyesore?
P.S.: I want to give special thanks Queens Crap for bringing this article from the Queens Courier to my attention. Thanks!