As the Department of Sanitation moves forward with the design of a new sanitation garage at Fresh Kills to replace the District 1 garage at Jersey Street, Councilwoman Debi Rose announced that the timeline for the $136.8 million project has been moved ahead by one year, to a 2023 completion date.
The Department of Sanitation, along with the Department of Design and Construction and consultant TEN Arquitectos will present on preliminary plans for the garage at the Tuesday night meeting of Community Board 1, at 7:30 pm at All Saints Episcopal Church, 2329 Victory Boulevard.
“Since the day I took office in 2010, this has been a top priority of mine,” said Councilwoman Rose. “The garage at Jersey Street is not only an eyesore that impedes economic development, it is an environmental hazard for all who live and work in the neighborhood, and it does not serve the men and women of the Department of Sanitation’s District 1.
“Unfortunately, the wheels of government move slowly,” Councilwoman Rose added. “In 2010, we were able to move some of the trucks to Fresh Kills as a partial solution to a terrible situation. After years of meetings and constant advocacy, I was able to secure more than $100 million in the Fiscal Year 2015 budget to build a new garage. And now I continue my advocacy in trying to speed up the process.
“When Commissioner Kathryn Garcia said last year that the project would not be completed until 2024, I knew we could do better,” the Councilwoman added. “The people of New Brighton have suffered long enough, and I’m pleased that government agencies have heard me loud and clear. In every conversation I have with Commissioner Garcia and her team, my message is always the same: ‘How can we speed up this process?’ I thank Commissioner Garcia, as well as DDC Acting Commissioner Ana Barrio for working together to streamline this process. I know 2023 is still a long time to wait, but we’re starting the design phase from a much better place than we were last year. My hope is that we can further accelerate this process”
The Councilwoman met with Commissioner Garcia in April, and again last week with the Department of Sanitation, the Department of Design and Construction and TEN Arquitectos, which has prepared a preliminary design. Plans include the construction of a new garage to accommodate District 1—which covers the North Shore— and District 3, and the renovation of an existing garage at Fresh Kills to serve as a boroughwide repair shop.
With preliminary designs complete, the project now moves toward a more detailed design phase, which is expected to be complete in February 2019. After a streamlined 6-month procurement process, construction is expected to begin in February of 2020 and be complete in August 2023. The Department of Design and Construction is looking to see if these dates can be further improved.
“The Department of Sanitation has assured me that as soon as the new garage is complete, the personnel and equipment can move from the current garage in a matter of days,” Councilwoman Rose said. “We can then move forward with true neighborhood revitalization.”
The New York City Economic Development Corporation issued a Request for Expressions of Interest in 2014 for redevelopment of the garage site. Proposals included mixed-use complexes, with retail, child care and/or medical care on the first floor, with affordable and market rate housing above.
“My hope is that once this garage is removed and the site remediated that this neighborhood finally receives amenities that will serve residents well and connect the Jersey Street and Victory Boulevard commercial corridors,” said Councilwoman Rose. “This site has tremendous potential to lift this neighborhood, and I look forward to seeing this project through to completion.”