Sept. 27, 2017 By Nathaly Pesantez (Updated Sept. 28)
A Best Western hotel located near the Sunnyside/LIC border has become a homeless shelter, the Sunnyside Post has learned.
The site at 38-05 Hunters Point Ave. has been in use by the Department of Homeless Services since Tuesday, according to a spokesperson for the agency.
“We are using this location as a bridge to shelter homeless New Yorkers who would otherwise be turned out into the streets,” the spokesperson said. The DHS is currently using 64 units out of the 82 it reserved at the location for families with children.
A hotel employee reached through the hotel’s listed number confirmed that families began moving in on Tuesday.
“It was a surprise for everybody,” the employee said. “We only got a week notice.”
The employee said “everything changed” on Sept. 25. The date coincides with a photo tweeted on that same day showing a letter written by hotel management to employees at the Hunters Point Ave. site.
“This letter is to inform you that your employment with…Best Western will be ending on September 25, 2017,” the letter written by SSN Hotels, a Delaware-based LLC, reads. “The business has been sold.” The tweet was directed to Council Member Jimmy Van Bramer, who replied on Sept. 26 saying that a member of his staff would follow up with the user.
The Twitter user, Matthew Russo, told the Sunnyside Post that the letter was found on the ground near the hotel.
Elected officials and community leaders were not notified about the shelter until Tuesday, according to the DHS.
Van Bramer took exception to the lack of notice.
“I am disappointed that my office and the community did not have input in or knowledge of the decision to convert this hotel. While we can never demonize the homeless, many of which are children, I share in my community’s frustration of the process by which this decision was made.”
The new homeless shelter comes in the midst of the city announcing an effort to phase out the use of hotels as shelters by 2023 throughout the city.
The DHS spokesperson said the city is prioritizing phasing out cluster units first, followed by commercial hotels at shelter sites. The 38-05 Hunters Point Ave. location will eventually be phased out as a shelter, along with the the two other commercial hotel locations currently providing shelter in Community Board 2.
The former Best Western site used to be the site of a Red Roof Inn.
Update Sept. 28, 6:10 p.m. – Article updated with information from the Department of Homeless Services and Councilman Van Bramer
Anyone willing to rent their home?? The DHS in need of two family properties — Department of Homeless Services aggressively searching for locations in Sunnyside and Long Island City, they will pay top dollar several homes in sunny side community already under contract through the NYC procurement office for placement of half-way houses for people in need. You can get up to $11,500 per month guaranteed depending on square footage, number of bathrooms, bedroom and layout. Call DHS (212) 361-8000 for more information.
Invite all of you to take a walk in front of the best western on 39th Street in the evenings, just check it out, you can see the people placed in that homeless shelter, shirtless thugs roaming and hanging around. 39th Street between 50th Avenue and the Service Road needs more lighting, just a few weeks since the homeless shelter installed and the neighborhood already has changed, Our entire community should vote against DiBlasio on election day.
Oran Juice Jones was once homeless. Then his hit song “Walking in the Rain” skyrocketed upbtge charts. Needless to say now El Loco (his tour manager) and him are living in a beautiful 3 family home in Maspeth. El Loco has one apartment and Oran had the other. The third apartment is used as a recording studio where Oran has been working on his come back album for the last 30+ years. Now that’s a rags to riches story. Note to Al from Sunnyside: get off your mommys couch and start working.
JVB knew about this months ago. Just like Dromm with the Pan Am, Crowley with the Maspeth Holiday Inn. They claim they didn’t know, but DHS Commissioner said otherwise, when he became sick and tired of Crowley berating him.
These hotel owners a making out like bandits. They’re charging full rate and not giving the same services as a hotel –no maid service etc.. This homeless shelter scheme is created to rape the taxpayer. Think about it.. why is the city spending almost 5000/mo to house a homeless family in a dinky hotel room, when they can rent an apt for 1/2 that? Queens is getting hit with the most homeless shelter, as Queens has the most hotel/motels outside of Manhattan.
What about homeless veterans? Hope there arent as many as there used to be. Too many veterans are killing themselves& deserve help. Somehow, watching the recent PBS series about the Vietnam War is a reminder about that group of homeless,too.
Anonymous – What have you done to help homeless vets? Stop being a whiner and become a doer.
the VA shelter on Borden houses a surprisingly high # of registered sex offenders. #justsayin
We’ll be seeing more people in Sunnyside with a sad face and a sign about their plight. How come we don’t see immigrants legal or illegal begging. Because they want to work unlike these freeloaders.
Thanks liberal do gooder diBlasio. There are now homeless people lying all over Sunnyside. Thanks for ruining our neighborhood.
and blame JVB also for this — he is no exception –
I said it earlier: the brand new Motel 6 at Skillman and47th avenue will soon be a shelter… and in fact it just changed name.
So if my comment is nt deleted by JVB’s crazy supporters at the post, just wait…
what is the new name?
Everyone hide in your closets and get your Armageddon supplies ready…oh noooooo! Homeless people are in our neighborhood! There goes my property value…those dam liberal do gooders!!!
JVB and the mayor are evil…they didnt stick these vagrants in someone else’s neighborhood…build that wall…around Sunnyside!!!!
I heard that Neil is offering up apartments to the homeless as long as they abide by his and Barbara’s rules. He said he will be serving grape soda in the lobby this week when he throws an open house for the homeless. He has many vacant apartments now that all the scardy cat Snowflakes ran out. Also the parking spot out front is now for rent being that Al from Sunnyside had to junk his 72 Cadillac Coupe de Ville that was previously owned by Oran Juice Jones.
If there are homeless people/families with children in need, I am glad they have a place to stay. If it’s blocks away from my home, or many miles away – I am simply happy these people have safe place to be, if only temporarily as our system allows. It’s sad to think that so many of us are advocating against helping people.
Dismissing these people (our new neighbors, like it or not) as criminals and drug addicts is not only patently false, but divisive and based on pervasive and politically motivated misinformation.
” Dismissing these people -as criminals and drug addicted is not only patently false”, when did you carry out the drug tests and the back round checks? What’s your source of info? When did you test them?
You are off your meds. Get tested.
good for them! they still get that free Best Western breakfast buffet 6-10?
CHHAAAAAANNNGGGEE!!!!!!.. Thank god he’ll have a place to go now! NOT! Now he’ll have some competition begging, fights over territory. These people don’t work! Their jobs are begging on the street! Get ready for an increase in the amount. Agh.. what a blithe on the neighborhood!
If Al from a Sunnyside would just take a few families into his mommys Duplex Penthouse at Big Six Towers than there would be less homeless. Instead he just lays on the couch all day listening to Oran Juice Jones greatest hits. He keeps replaying the song Walking in the Rain which was roughly based on the story of his moms ex boy friend Neil. FYI. I saw Neal the other day eating in the new Japanese restaurant the other day. He gave the Hillary sushi roll a thumbs up. He said it was very fishy tasting.
Hey stupid. Al is from Sunnyside, not the big 6, that’s woodside. Plus al has a nice house. Wake up
Responsible, struggling, homeless people and families need assistance for a given period of time until they can get back on their feet. Those who take drugs/drink, don’t try to better their situation (by getting jobs, volunteering, etc), and are generally drains on the neighborhood, tax payers and economy at large, do not. Until the city takes measures to delineate between the two we will just be flagrantly handing our hard earned money to unknown LLCs who are likely part of the 1% and don’t need the $ anyhow.
Does anyone know what is going on with the building on 39th street and 50th av is that going to be a homeless shelter also
Yes, it will. Eventually. Please don’t picket in front. Thank you, Mngmnt
no they are JVB’s words — NO PICKETING –
Anonymous- Van Bramer said that in reference to the Pan American Hotel ( you know the welfare hotel where the slobs held up signs telling the picketing local home owners to go back to China) “family” shelter. People feel targeting the children by angry protesting mob might be counter productive and just plain wrong. Thank you for quoting the man out of context and twisting it to an agenda you obviously have no faith in. Your silly out of context post is the equivalent of telling a lie.
It is possible. owner said he ran out of $$ to complete project & is supposedly trying to get city to buy it from him.
Just walked by the Best Western as I walked my dog saw three shirtless African american men walking quickly in a thuggish f*&^ing this and f*&^ing that menacing tone towards the bodega on 38th street and 50th Ave, one young African american young mother with two babies smoking a cigarette in front of the BW., I walked by the building you mentioned and read the placard posted on the fence says mixed used Community, Residential, commercial. The word “Community”is worrisome as all it could mean is another shelter….
I live on 39th Street a couple of blocks from Red Room Inn. I have witnessed
some of the new neighbors of this new homeless shelter milling/walking around slowly and smoking it up (Weed) as they walk around the neighborhood, just peering into the front and side yards and it’s only been a few days. Don’t leave your back doors unlocked or your windows open. I specifically asked Mayor DiBlasio this question about housing homeless in hotels in our neighborhood (LIC) and JVB was present at the Town Hall meeting at Queens Vocation HS, they giggled and he gave me a quick generic response. This is the beginning of our neighborhood being inundated with homeless (Vibe Hotel/Quality Inn on Qns Blvd/Red Roof and others). How much is the city paying to house these people on a nightly basis? We are paying for the hotel rooms, plus their public assistance, healthcare, food stamps, etc. Beware of the building being expanded on Queens Blvd between 37th & 38th Street (formerly VG Nichols Furniture Store) next to La Quinta Inn. Will this building be turned to a Homeless shelter as well? I like my neighborhood, bought my home here 1998, but I should consider selling and getting out of here altogether…. or stay and fight? Go to the CB2 calendar and attend our next community board meeting and make our voices heard!!!
Don’t complain I just came back from San Diego. Homeless every where. Mostly downtown area though. Saw some on the slopes by the freeways. Still seems like more homeless in NYC though.
No child should be without a roof over their head or have to worry about where their next meal is coming from. NYC needs to make our homeless problem a priority. As New Yorker’s and human’s we need to have compassion along with measurable programs to support homeless families and individuals.
The problem here is hotels turning into homeless shelters is not about helping families at all. It’s about making money. In a report earlier this year Scott Stringer found that the average daily cost for commercial hotel bookings for the city’s homeless skyrocketed a whopping 600 percent over 16 months — going from $82,214 per day in November 2015 to $576,203 in February 2017.
The owners of these LLC’s are making money hand over fist, coming directly from the NYC taxpayers. I’m guessing if you follow that money it goes right back to people who donate/have donated to de Blasio’s mayoral campaign.
The number one problem is a lot of these people are not from New York. The city council voted to house anyone from anywhere no questions asked. Mayor Bloomberg tried to stop it but he was vetoed by the council. Nyc homeless population will only go up no matter how good the economy is.This will be a heavy price on hard working home owners and taxpayers
You’re right. The unfortunate family who was victim of that horrible radiator explosion in the Bronx last winter came from Portland Maine.
Yes, they were from Maine and forgot to mention both mom and dad were Heroin Addicts, The Dad was passed out on the sofa while the two babies were locked in their room when the valve gave way blowing hot steam into the room. This occurred during the day. Children Services had visited the home in the past on neglect complaint by neighbors. Mom was out of the apartment at the time. A total tragedy.
call jvbs office and express concern
call cathy nolan’s lic office
jvbs office is getting flooded with calls.
i was told no notice to communites is needed courtesy of bill diblasios “emergency shelter” order.
there are apparantly strict rules and curfews enforced but i am not sure that will change anything. jvb’s office was notofied tuesday. sounds like he was blindsided. everyone that can should attend the community meetings to learn more.
This is exactly what everyone here who claims to care should be doing. Start calling these number and have your voices heard, not just on social media.
Better yet, why not go to the motel and look the families in the eye and tell them they don’t deserve a place to stay?
What courageous Sunnysider is going to lead that charge?
I have drug problems. Thank God for shelters. I live good, get free food, free rent, free cable.. etc. Anything I need. Life is good.
But note it’s a family shelter. Families who need it will get a room. Usually, single homeless people have to go to other group shelters. Families (with kids) always get priority and will go to places like this. There are also some in Woodside in queens blvd who have housed families. I know one family in particular who was there awaiting a apartment. Some people just need help and if they have kids- they shouldn’t have to stay in the crime ridden shelters for singles.
JVB only cares about sunnyside gardens
This says its going to be a family shelter which is drastically different than a mens homeless shelter from a statistical crime perspective. Family shelters are made up of people, including children, who are waiting to be placed in the low-income housing system. I live on an adjacent street less than 2 blocks away.
Declaring once self homeless is the way to speed up access for a public housing apartment and section 8 housing vouchers. It’s a scam.you can’t afford to live here move!! It’s not the end of the world. I personally know hundreds who had to do it. They didn’t demand the public subsidize them.
It’s not out of the way for people living on 39th street,all beautiful houses and now this around the corner.
I’m sure it’s much more difficult to ignore the homeless problem when you’re forced to see it on a daily basis. Push for low-income housing in YOUR neighborhood, not just somewhere else.
@Native New Yorker. So him many homeless are you putting up big mouth
Native- The “homeless problem” is greatly exaggerated, its the way to speed up access for a public housing apartment and section 8 housing vouchers. You can’t afford to live here move!! It’s not the end of the world. I personally know hundreds who had to do it. They didn’t demand the public subsidize them. Twenty five years ago my good friend lost a job we moved him his wife and 2 children into my apartment for over until he got on his feet again. My father did it with my cousins in the 60’s. No welfare no homeless shelter no begging for gov’t subsidy or handout. As someone else said on this comment stream “it’s a scam”.
it’s out of the way when people like me have the luxury of not living on the Southside of sunnyside
oh god no!!! not another brown person in MY neighborhood. Ugh…you’re a vomit!
I agree. I’m moving
Why must someone always make a comment about color? There are plenty of white people sponging off the system too. Probably people of creeds and orientations you would be hatist about too. Enough.
The comment was meant to be sarcastic
you didnt do it right
I live around the block on 39pl. My Tennant just told me he’s moving because of this. Real good jvb, make us all move why don’t you
At least it’s out of the way
This is terrible news, but it all doesn’t fall on JVB. He is done a lot for our community and I am sure this will be resolved at some point. Hopefully sooner, rather than later.
you are wrong JVB knows all about this – he tells people that he does not – his is lying — so what that means is that he is NOT DOING HIS JOB – but yet all he talks about is CULTURE and MUSEUMS and kneeling down in front of CITY HALL – some counsel person we have NOT
And he keeps them out of his area. He pushes all the crap onto the south side of Queens Blvd.
He puts them on as so they can visit their relatives
Does anyone ever think JVB does anything right? Come on now!!! Is it just safe to say if he holds office, he will get bashed? Like others that truly deserve it.
These comments are by anonymous trolls. Most of whom are the same person. And they try to impersonate me.
Yes, it does
This is outrageous. Now, we’ll see begging and crime going up. I hope they provide social services for them. These people do need help but it’s not fair if liberal do gooder deBlasio makes hard working, honest people who have either done well or their families have done well.
So, you’re the only honest, hard-working person here? That implies that the homeless are not. Many of them have jobs and work hard for substandard wages, certainly not enough to live on their own.
Excellent. These people need a good home. I think I stand with all Sunnysiders and Long Island Cityites when I say welcome to our community.
Homeless shelters are a get rich quick scam for the owner. The residents are also scam artists. Nobody related to these people are willing to help these people? None of these people have friends and family that like them enough to help out? What type of people are these people? You can’t afford to live here then move to a place you can afford just like all of my friends and relatives did in the 80’s 90’s and 00″s. Most of these people in the shelters feel they are entitled slobs. Just like the slobs who got off the buses at the Pan American hotel telling homeowners to go back to China.
Make them take drug tests or lose all entitlement.
George- You’re a typical Fox News viewer, you constantly suggest we keep on doing the same exact thing over and over again and expect a different result. The drug testing thing didn’t work in Florida ,North Carolina or Oklahoma when it was implemented. I’m sure you don’t care ignorance is bliss. If you’ll notice I’m against the shelter but I’m also against fools.
I guess you hate yourself Bruno. How about we make welfare a voluntary tax and see how many whinners agree to pay it.
Oh shut up with fox news you idiot
George – Some more of your pearls of wisdom. If we could pick and choose every single item what our tax dollars went to individually then only the things people liked and enjoyed would get paid for. It’s not that hard to figure out. Fox News has really turned you into a class A fool. Congratulations!
Homeless belong in homes, not hotels. Why are they dumping all the homeless people in sunnyside/woodside? Do they have to be close to manhattan somehow? Aren’t they any actual shelters anywhere? Are they actually assisting disaster victims or just dumping sketchy unknown people who just claim to be homeless? Not to mention “Delaware-based LLC”.. So many questions, so little answers, like Nathaly said in the article– Nobody seems to be reachable for comment.
The owners use LLC’s to hide their identity. It takes a little digging to find the actual owner.
I hope the homeless can get back on their feet. Glad we live in a compassionate country that takes care of the most needy and vulnerable.
How many are staying at your place tonight? Lead by example. Maybe start with the one taking a dump at the bus stop at Queens blvd and 33rd
Your lack of humanity is an embarrassment. Please tell us where the homeless should go and don’t say, “Not here.”
So, you didn’t answer the question, how many are staying at your place tonight? It’s not a lack of humanity, it’s being tired of being blamed and having to bear the burden of other people’s wrong choices. It’s coming off a train after leaving the apartment 10+ hours ago to work and be harassed and threatened by people who bring nothing to the table. People who were brought here by other people who would not allow them to be housed in their own neighborhood. Most of these People have never tried. People who were raised to expect others to care for their needs. A liberal is a conservative who hasn’t been mugged yet.
A liberal is just a conservative who has been arrested.
YOu sound like a victim. Get real — no one choosed to be a homeless. If you’re being harassed, it’s probably someone with mental illness. Grow up and learn some respect.
How can you say that you have compassion for vulnerable people, then say that they chose to be down on their luck?
Sunnyside Home of the Homeless and Hipsters
And where do you live?
Well done Jimmy van b. and again u failed to inform the local taxpayers.
How much is the owner charging the taxpayers for these rooms? What a scam!
Keep electing democrats.
Rip van Republican
Yeah anon vote Republican so we could all have low wage RTW jobs and live a step below the people in the welfare hotel. Republican policies have created the poorest states in median household income in the nation like Alabama, Louisiana, South Carolina, Arkansas while Democratic policies have created the wealthiest in median household income like Connecticut, Maryland, New Jersey and Washington just to name a few. Dump DeBlasio vote independent.
Homekess Shelters are a DeBlasio scam. Find out who owns this place and set up demonstrations outside his house just like we did to owner of the dump in Maspeth. It worked when we did it in the 1980’s too.
NIMBYism at its worst. If you’re a big fan of property rights, you shouldn’t care so much about who are using the building.
Native – Property rights are fine until your property starts interfering with the rights of other property owners. In the case of welfare hotels the right to live in a safe neighborhood and not bring down the property value of your neighbors. Come to the Pan American Hotel or the Quality Inn on Queens Blvd ,parking lot (which I live adjacent to) and see the welfare mamas smoking pot and meeting up with their baby daddy’s who they claim have abandoned them..
Do tell what policies “created” all this wealth. The sad part is that you actually believe any politician ever created wealth for anybody other than himself. How are the taxes in the states you mentioned?
Anon- Do you really believe low wages will set you free in capitalist consumer market driven economy? Do you really believe low wages will help finance the building of infrastructure or fund an education system in states that use a progressive taxation system to fund these endeavors? Then you believe the Republican con. There is a direct correlation between crime low wages and an underfunded education system. In one post you said vote Republican and next post, when the discussion isn’t going your way, you say political policy is irrelevant. You’re a walking yogi-ism. Haha Facts are facts and statistics show Republican policies are a common denominator in the poorest US states and democratic policies are the common denominator in the wealthier US States. Fact!
@anon- If political party policies are not tied to wealth creation then why are billions of dollars being funneled to our politicians in the form of campaign contributions to candidates, parties, political action committees, 527 organizations, and Carey committees? Policies are directly linked to wealth creation and accumulation , usually for a select few.
Hey Anon- the owners of the welfare hotels are directly capitalizing and creating wealth off of the DeBlasio administrations homeless policies. The top 1% will be creating wealth off the Trump Tax Reform bill and Tax Policies eliminating the Estate Tax and Alt min. Are you sure you don’t want to rethink your absurd statement about politicians not creating wealth for anybody? You’re watching too much Fox News.
WOW that anon got so smug. You guys Mike, John and Bruno really put him in his place. Good work.
You folks don’t know the difference between creating wealth and redistributing wealth. Keep watching Rachel Maddow (seriously I own stock in Comcast) and reading Mother Jones. Yeah they really put me in my place. Fox News blah, blah, blah…
@anon-Redistribution like Republican Tax Plans that shift wealth from middle tax brackets to the top brackets. Goodbye Alt Min. Every financial transaction is a form of redistribution. Anon you’re so smug with your no value added posts, no wonder you’re so unpopular. Come back to this comment stream when you get into high school.
Great job JVB.
Good. It will give people a decent place to live to help them get back on their feet again. That’s what Jesus would say. Sunnyside Post commenters…?
Christian? More like Moron.
The only thing moronic was your comment. Please rethink your life. These are human beings,
They’re ex-cons and drug abusers not family’s who fell on hard times so save the bleeding heart talk
You know who was a homeless? Jesus mom … Mary Christ. She had to sleep in a donkey hut. You have no clue who is in shelters … Only what you read on brightBart news.
About a month ago a guy that look like he was on drugs asked me directions to that hotel and we were on Greenpoint and 46th Street so I think they’ve been living there a lot longer
Great new digs for Al from Sunnyside. And you snowflakes should embrace these poor homeless lads.
thanks JVB just what we needed NOT and please do not say you knew nothing about this hotel at all —
I’m sure YOU don’t need shelter but this isn’t for you. It’s for families who are in dire straits. This is what happens when people refuse to allow housing for the poor to be built in their neighborhood. This is not someone else’s problem. It’s all of our’s.
Why don’t you people stop complaining and vote this guy out.
Great location! The homeless can just drive their cars from the LIE to the shelter . Good thinking JVB.
This is nobody’s ideal solution. A little compassion goes a long way.
It is compassionate to throw homeless people in a crummy motel with no place to eat, blocks and blocks away from public transportation.
It’s much better than having them be homeless. I live seven blocks away from the 7 train and it’s not that big of a deal. Also, this isn’t a crummy motel; it’s a roof over their heads, with a bathroom and a place to cook a meal. Much better than the alternative.
It’s MUCH better than being homeless- It’s not a crummy motel; it’s a roof, a bedroom, and a place to live. I live 7 blocks from the subway and it’s not such a big deal. This is nice for people who would otherwise be homeless.
That’s just it smitty the overwhelming majority of these people would not be homeless if they didn’t get into the “shelter” system. It’s a scam! This system is a way to speed up acceptance into the public housing and section 8 voucher programs. Back in the “day” family put you up and helped out until you got back on your feet. You couldn’t afford a place in a decent neighborhood you moved. That’s how most of the southern and western cities experienced population booms, people looking to escape over crowded less than desirable and expensive places.