Diaz Jr. Urges ‘No’ on Kingsbridge

ALBANY—Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. is urging council members from the borough to vote against a proposal to redevelop the Kingsbridge Armory because the developer has not committed to a “living wage” provision for workers in the complex.

“From the first day I got involved in the issue of the redevelopment of the Kingsbridge Armory, I made it crystal clear that I would not support this project unless it included a guarantee that the employees at the future retail center would be paid a living wage. Though the wage supplement provisions that the Bloomberg administration has put forward represent a major step forward compared to our negotiations six months ago, there is no guarantee. With that said, I will continue to oppose this project, and I urge the members of the City Council to do the same,” said Diaz. “I am proud of the work that my office did to negotiate a strong community benefits agreement for this project that would offer the best possible benefits for the people of the Bronx. But the current proposals fall short of our stated goals, and I cannot, in good conscience, support this deal. I hope that the City Council will join me in opposition and vote this project down.”

Diaz made a non-binding recommendation that the project not be approved unless such an agreement is signed during the land-use review process, but the Council vote is the binding action. Related has said such an agreement will make the project unsustainable and financially unviable.

Michael Bloomberg’s administration has been pushing for development, and urging Council approval. A vote is expected on Monday.