REMINDER: Rally At City Hall

September 20, 2011 ·
Filed under: 11222, Greenpoint, Greenpoint Brooklyn, Greenpoint Magic 

Although I posted this last week I wanted to take a moment everyone that the rally to protest the proposed assessment center at 400 McGuinness Boulevard is tomorrow!

Rally To Stop The Proposed Assessment Center At 400 McGuinness Boulevard
September 21, 2011 at 11:00 a.m.
City Hall
260 Broadway
New York, New York 10007

From The New York Shitty Inbox: Rally At City Hall

This item comes courtesy of Rami Metal, the Community Liaison for City Councilman Steve Levin. Next Wednesday, September 21st, at 11:00 a.m. Mr. Levin along with Senator Martin Malave Dilan, Assemblyman Joe Lentol and other notables will be present on the steps of City Hall to protest the proposed homeless assessment center for 400 McGuinness Boulevard. As some of you might recall, our City Comptroller (and Mayoral candidate), John Liu, has initiated an investigation into this shelter and others citing “irregularities“. What will happen with remains to be seen. However, in the meantime anyone who has questions or wishes to RSVP should contact Mr. Metal at the above-listed email address or telephone number.

Rally To Stop The Proposed Assessment Center At 400 McGuinness Boulevard
September 21, 2011 at 11:00 a.m.
City Hall
260 Broadway
New York, New York 10007

Reader Comment du Jour: A Modest Proposal

June 28, 2011 ·
Filed under: 11222, Greenpoint, Greenpoint Brooklyn, Greenpoint Magic 

Some of you might recall that I featured this piece of wheatpaste work (which hails from the Pulaski Bridge across the street from 400 McGuinness) a few days ago. Well, my blog post came to the attention of the woman responsible and she left a comment. Here it is:

You can read the statement about Jesus’s picture here:

When you upload your photo you write a description and give its location. And yes, the idea was to declare the fact that people live here, this is not an anonymous point on the map! I like the idea of posting images of our homeless people… Thank you for posting missheather!

This missive— or more accurately the person who posted it— jogged my memory: I remembered that she has contacted me some time ago with an idea she had. Regrettably, it had fallen between the cracks so yesterday I endeavored to catch up with her. What followed was a very interesting dialogue. One, I will add, which resulted in (what yours truly believes to be) a very good idea*— but more about that in a few. First, let’s take the statement about Jesus alluded to in this woman’s comment.  It reads as follows:

Greenpoint sits on the northern tip of Brooklyn and for years has fought attempts to overload this little neighborhood with the services that should really be shared by all New York City neighborhoods (incinerators, waste transfer stations, intake centers). We are home to an enormous sewage treatment center which, in many opinions, including mine, is a marvel of engineering and design! When city government looks our way to host these services, I hope they see the faces of our neighborhood.

Now I would like you, gentle readers, to (re)consider the placement of Jesus. Yes, what this woman is alluding to is our proposed assessment center. It was her thinking that by placing Jesus, a Greenpoint resident, across the street from a facility which is very much opposed by this community she would be in some small way putting a human face on the community which will be impacted by it. I found this to be rather brilliant. So much so, that it got me to thinking— and emailing. Here’s what she and I propose (NOTE: this is still very much in the working stages):

Since this project, InsideOut, is about community awareness/building and given that the man ultimately responsible for this proposed shelter has not seen fit to face the very public he will be saddling with a rotating door of 200 homeless men, perhaps we as a community should use this project to make our presence known? Simply put, we want to get as many Greenpointers as we can to participate and hang posters facing this facility. Since one of the dictates of this project is that these posters must be placed on properties with the owner’s permission, I have reached out to the guys at McGuinness Brake Service (which is located across the street and faces 400 McGuinness Boulevard). As of the writing of this post they seem to be very amenable to the idea. Best of all, it would appear that we can do this as a “group action” per InsideOut’s web site.

Thoughts/ideas, fellow Greenpointers?

Miss Heather

*Especially if we can get our elected officials involved.

Spotted At 400 McGuinness Boulevard: Men At Work

June 22, 2011 ·
Filed under: 11222, Greenpoint, Greenpoint Brooklyn, Greenpoint Magic 

This morning yours truly woke up in a state. As some of you have probably noticed, my site has been down quite a bit. This makes yours truly rather unhappy. Instead of simply staring at a blank screen hoping, PRAYING, that Dreamhost* would get its shit together I decided to go for a walk— and in so doing became a participant in a rather remarkable series of events.

On a lark I decided to swing by the site of our proposed 200 bed intake center for homeless men (at the behest, this time around, of the Bowery Residents’ Commission): 400 McGuinness Boulevard. I quickly ascertained there was work being conducted. I commenced to document it.

My interest in this activity (Let’s face facts: this part of Greenpoint does not sport many pink-haired women with heart-shaped sunglasses walking around) was quickly noticed by a few chaps working at the Department of Transportation depot across the street. They informed me that work is being conducted at this site around the clock, that they are “trying to be sneaky about it” and that they have called 311 to no avail. I informed them that I had every intention of documenting this activity and calling 311 when I got home. This is when something truly fortuitous happened.

An employee of the Department of Buildings drove by! We started shouting and waving our hands.

He backs up and I apprise him of the situation, e.g.; these men are conducting work and there are no permits posted whatsoever.

As he is calling this in to headquarters I noticed they seem to be working on the entire complex. I document this.

That’s when my new friends at the Department of Transportation decided to swing by and tender their two cents.

They smile for my camera…

and after admonishing the Department of Buildings gentleman that (and I quote) “you better be treating this lady nicely” give him the whole rundown of what they have witnessed.

Upon the conclusion of this tete a tete they drive off and I hear someone call my name.

It is Anthony of McGuinness Power Brake Service. He tells me that powers-that-be at 400 McGuinness have one valid permit on file with Department of Buildings; it is for plumbing work and removing non-load bearing walls. He quickly adds, however, that they appear to be doing a lot more than this and states he has photographic evidence. I will go into the latter in more detail momentarily.

When I arrived home I perused the Department of Buildings web site.

Sure enough, Anthony was correct! I quickly noticed there was a plan filed which was disapproved. Curious piqued, I gave it a look-see.

As you can imagine I found this interesting given what I was told by the gentlemen from the Department of Transportation and Anthony; they asserted work as outlined in this rejected Plan Exam was, in fact, being conducted. But neither I nor you, gentle readers, need take them at their word. Anthony’s photographs pretty much say it all. Pay special attention to the refrigerator(s) being unloaded.

It sure looks like they are setting up “house” to me! Those of you who are curious can learn more about the man behind this endeavor, Shimmie Horn, by clicking here.

Miss Heather

*Those of you who have friends— or better yet: enemies— who operate sites which you believe are not fit for publication, do recommend Dreamhost. He or she can write to his or her contentment and their content will not be inflicted on the general public by virtue of the fact their web site will not be up! Genius!!!

From The Community Board 1 Meeting: More Ado About 400 McGuinness Boulevard

March 8, 2011 ·
Filed under: 11222, Greenpoint, Greenpoint Brooklyn, Greenpoint Magic 


I knew something was afoot when I noticed a (charming) retinue of McGuinness Boulevard old timers in the back of the room when I arrived at tonight’s board meeting. Sure enough, I was right: they had learned the owner of 400 McGuinness Boulevard sold the property and were understandably concerned. Per a cursory search on ACRIS, this would appear to be true.

Here is what I have learned from someone in the know: this property was sold to one Shimmie Horn. He has bought out the remaining tenants for a $100,000 a pop and they have since moved out. If the name “Horn” sounds familiar to those of you who have read the Village Voice over the years, it should: he is the son of one Morris Horn. After his father’s passing Shimmie inherited a number of his father’s holdings, among them Correction Services Corporation. Here’s some information about this organization I found from a site called New York Hall of Shame*:

The state’s Lobbying Commission fined a private prison company a record $300,000 today for failing to  report free transportation, meals and other gifts it had given to legislators in an effort to keep millions of dollars in state  contracts.  Reams of documents and depositions released by the commission as it announced the fine today painted a picture of a company,  Correctional Services Corporation, that did everything it could to curry favor with more than a dozen elected officials in Brooklyn and the Bronx as it won contracts to provide services to recently released prisoners. The $300,000 fine is the largest that the state has ever imposed on a single company for breaking its lobbying laws…

That’s right folks: now we’re looking at a halfway house for released Federal convicts. For those of you who are keeping track this would mean one halfway house, one three quarter house and the Greenpoint Hotel all in one city block . Never a dull moment in Greenpoint…

Miss Heather

P.S.: This matter has been brought to the attention of our city’s Public Advocate, Bill DeBlasio, by our Community Board’s Public Safety Chair Mieszko Kalita. Mr. DeBlasio said he would look into it. Otherwise I have some footage from last night’s rather lengthy meeting. It is currently uploading.

*Do give this material a read. Apparently Mario Cuomo received money from Correction Services Corporation. Among MANY other New York “public servants”.

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