2010-07-21 / Front Page

Ulrich, DEP To Develop Abandoned Rockaway Site

Matthew Mahoney, associate commissioner for the Bureau of Communications and Intergovernmental Affairs, Deputy Commissioner for the Bureau of Wastewater Treatment Vincent Sapienza, City Councilmember Eric Ulrich and Community Board 14 District Manager Jonathan Gaska unveil plans for the new storage facility. 
Matthew Mahoney, associate commissioner for the Bureau of Communications and Intergovernmental Affairs, Deputy Commissioner for the Bureau of Wastewater Treatment Vincent Sapienza, City Councilmember Eric Ulrich and Community Board 14 District Manager Jonathan Gaska unveil plans for the new storage facility. City Councilmember Eric A. Ulrich (R-Ozone Park), city DEP officials and Community Board 14 District Manager Jonathan Gaska announced plans to build a storage facility at an abandoned construction project at Beach 106th Street and Beach Channel Drive.
The city will demolish the partially built structures, level the land and construct two storage buildings to be used by the Department of Environmental Protection, which will store spare parts and equipment for the adjacent Rockaway Wastewater Treatment Plant.
Ulrich said, “I’m pleased to stand here in Rockaway alongside the DEP and CB 14 to announce this project. This property has long been a source of complaints and frustration for my constituents. It is unsafe, unsightly and a community eyesore that is an impediment to the overall revitalization of the Rockaway Peninsula.”


DEP Commissioner Cas Holloway said, “Today’s announcement is another example of DEP’s efforts to be a good neighbor to the Rockaway community. This half-finished condominium complex has become a blemish on the community and its removal is finally at hand. After the project was halted a few years back, the city stepped in to ensure that the eyesore sitting right next to the Rockaway Wastewater Treatment Plant would not remain forever.”


“We’re very pleased this project is coming to its conclusion. It had become an attractive nuisance and we were afraid someone was going to get hurt or worse,” Gaska added.


Vincent Sapienza, deputy inspector for the Bureau of Wastewater Treatment, said, “We’re excited to finally have this project move forward. Since it is adjacent to the treatment plant, the DEP saw it as a good opportunity to use it for a beneficial purpose. As soon as Commissioner Holloway visited the site, this project became a priority for the department.”


The city took ownership of the property through condemnation proceedings in 2008, improving the perimeter sidewalk and fencing to make the site safer. Ulrich added, “I can’t tell you how grateful I am that this project is beginning. This eyesore brings down property values in the community, it’s not safe, and something had to be done about it. In this instance, our voices are being heard and we are able to resolve this issue for the Rockaway community.”

 

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