Outside a freezing cold Chambers Street municipal building Friday afternoon, Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer stressed his commitment to block any sale by the Bloomberg administration of three Lower Manhattan buildings owned by the city.
The mayor made reference to the sale in his State of the City last week, involving 22 Reade Street, 49-51 Chambers Street and 346 Broadway, part of the effort to streamline government, in this case through the consolidation and co-location of government office. The borough president argues, however, that the buildings might be put to better use than being sold off for private development.
“By any measure this Lower Manhattan community is suffering from overcrowded classrooms, school shortages and a lack of affordable housing to meet the needs of its constituents,” said Mr. Stringer, who is expected to run for mayor. He seems to have found a special loophole because the city is selling the property through the city’s Economic Development Corporation, which the borough president argues offers him oversight of the sales.
“If you try to get rid of these buildings through the E.D.C. process,” Mr. Stringer continued, “you must go before the Borough Board and that’s where there will be a final say and that’s why I’m here today to let the Mayor and those at City Government know that we’re all going to have to work together on this.” Read More