Oct. 7, 2013 By Christian Murray
A Woodside group is chartering a free bus next Wednesday to a landmarks preservation hearing that will determine whether an aluminaire house can be constructed in the Sunnyside Gardens Historic District.
Woodside on the Move, a non-profit group, will be taking residents to the Landmarks Preservation Commission, located at 1 Centre Street, on the afternoon of October 15. The bus will be free—subsidized by the personal campaign funds of Congressman Joseph Crowley.
The controversial proposal calls for the construction of eight residential units—and an architecturally significant aluminaire house–on the corner of 39th Avenue and 50th Street. The site was the former Phipps playground.
The Landmarks Preservation Commission will ultimately determine whether the aluminaire house and residential development can be built on the site. The commission might approve the plan, reject it outright or suggest modifications.
Adrian Bordoni, executive director of Woodside on the Move, said the decision to charter the bus is in response to the huge interest in the development. He said residents had reached out to him and the Congressman’s office seeking a bus.
Regina Shanley, a Sunnyside Gardens resident, thanked the Congressman and Woodside on the Move for the bus. “We are trying to get as many people to go to the hearing as possible and to speak out against it,” she said.
Community Board 2 rejected the proposal and elected officials have voiced their opposition to it. Congressman Crowley, Assembly woman Marge Markey, Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer and State Sen. Mike Gianaris have all spoken against it. They have all said that an aluminaire house is not in character with the red-brick, historic neighborhood—and question the terracotta cladding of the residential units.
UPDATE: The bus will leave from the Phipps Gardens Apartments, located at 51-01 39th Ave, at 12:30 pm and make other stops in the neighborhood upon request.
Shanley said that those residents who need a ride should send an e-mail to [email protected] or call 718-672-1309.