Letters to the Editor, Nov. 27

Cartoon by Jim Meadows

Cartoon by Jim Meadows

Remembering the Ave. C sanitation garage

Dear Town & Village,

I am writing about your October 9 page one article, “CB6 offers proposal: sanitation garage could go near Con Ed.”

It went on to say, “(there’s) a plan that presents the possibility of building the facility near the Con Edison plant at East 14th Street and Avenue C.” (That’s where the big gas tanks used to be; Stuyvesant Town was – out of what used to be known as “The Gashouse District” and is now a sports field for Little League baseball and soccer.) For Community Board 6 it would be an alternative to building a garage the Department of Sanitation wants to build at East 25th Street between First Avenue and the FDR.

Once upon a time, there was a sanitation garage on Avenue C between 16th and 17th Streets and it was there before STPCV was built. It was enormous, taller than ST buildings and it was large enough to hold several ST buildings with space to spare. From my parents’ window, you could see ST buildings, Playground 4, the FDR Drive, the East River and “the building.”

It was referred to as “The Sanitation Garage” or “the building” because there was nothing designating its name. That was just one of its mysteries. All anyone knew was that sanitation trucks (called “garbage trucks” then), snow plows and other snow removal equipment and other vehicles for various city uses parked there. You rarely saw a vehicle enter and never saw a vehicle leave. They made very little noise entering the building’s steep ramp. No one I knew ever saw a vehicle leave it. There was never a light on in any of its windows.

The only sign of life in it ever were yellow painted block letters on 23 of its many thousands of windows spelling out “Welcome, Colonel John Glenn.” This was in 1962, after he became the first American to orbit the earth. He was in New York for a ticker-tape parade and the FDR Drive overpass by it. My guess is he didn’t see it while playing handball in Pat’s Park.

The sign stayed on its windows until the building was town down in the 1980s.

I remember thinking, “they shouldn’t tear this building down because they don’t build them like this anymore and they’ll need it sometime in the future.” It would have solved the problem of building a new one on East 14th and Avenue C (and eliminating the sports field there now) or building a new one on East 25th Street.

If a new sanitation garage is built on East 15th and Avenue C, it might outlive STPCV. In 2065, there may not be an STPCV. Who knows what the future holds?

STPCV might be bought up, leveled and replaced by higher-priced high rises. Its tenants may find the sanitation garage not “befitting” their neighborhood and pressure the powers that be into building one some place else (possibly East 25th Street). Then they would have a lovely field at East 15th and Avenue C worthy of their children’s need for a large sports field.

A cautionary tale,

Richard Luksin
Minneapolis, MN

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Police Watch: Union Square ‘trespasser’ arrested, man assaulted by cellphone

Police arrested Michael Rohan, 22, for assault in front of Beth Israel Medical Center at 281 First Avenue last Saturday at 3:53 a.m. Rohan was being escorted out of the building when he allegedly punched the man escorting him in the face, causing redness, swelling and substantial pain.

Police arrested 27-year-old Farrag Bassam and 31-year-old Mohamed Moussa for assault in front of 115 East 23rd Street last Saturday at 6:30 p.m. Bassam and Moussa got into a fight in front of the location. Bassam allegedly bit Moussa, causing cuts, and police said that Moussa hit Bassam in the head, causing a bruise.

Martin Negron, 42, was arrested for possession of a hypodermic instrument inside 224 East 28th Street last Tuesday at 9:06 p.m. Negron was allegedly inside a stairwell on the 14th floor of the NYCHA building, without knowing anyone in the building.
After he was stopped, he was found to be in possession of alleged crack cocaine and several alleged crack pipes, as well as a prescription to trazodone that wasn’t his, two knives and 18 hypodermic needles, police said. Negron was also charged with possession of a weapon, possession of a controlled substance and criminal trespassing.

Police arrested 54-year-old Charles Holt for weapons possession at the corner of Seventh Avenue and West 14th Street last Wednesday at 3:15 a.m. Police said that Holt was urinating in front of the location in plain view and when he was searched, he was allegedly in possession of two razor blades with no legitimate reason to carry them. He allegedly told police that he carries them for protection.

Twenty-year-old Marc Velez for grand larceny in front of 400 East 30th Street last Wednesday at 10:49 a.m. Velez allegedly grabbed a woman’s cell phone from her hand and fled east on foot towards Bellevue Shelter. Police searched the shelter and found Velez, who matched the description that the victim gave, and upon further investigation, her phone was allegedly inside his room locker.

Police arrested 32-year-old Andre Perry for possession of a weapon inside the Union Square subway station last Wednesday at 2:26 p.m. Perry was allegedly walking inside the subway mezzanine with gold metal knuckles in plain view.

Ashley Oliver, 23, wa s arrested for theft of services in front of the Four Points Sheraton Hotel at 160 West 25th Street last Wednesday at 4:14 p.m. Oliver sat down at the hotel bar and ordered two Heineken beers and then allegedly refused to pay for them. She was then kicked out and told not to come back but she allegedly walked back in. Police said that the bill she refused to pay was for $15.24.

Police arrested 36-year-old Alfred Soto for possession of a controlled substance at the corner of West 27th Street and Sixth Avenue last Saturday at 2:24 a.m. Police said that he was driving while intoxicated and after pulling out of a parking spot, he allegedly merged into traffic without signaling, nearly hitting another car. Police said he then swerved into the third right lane, nearly hitting two more cars. He blew .173 on a Breathalyzer at the scene. After searching him, police found that he was in possession of an alleged controlled substance. Police did not specify what the controlled substance was. Soto was also charged with intoxicated driving.

Police arrested 38-year-old Hunter Manderson for burglary at the corner of Broadway and East 21st Street last Sunday at 12:40 p.m. A man told police that he saw an unknown person inside his office without permission. Manderson allegedly removed items from the office and fled through the main front entrance. He was also charged with possession of stolen property and criminal trespassing.

Police arrested 49-year-old Christopher Williams in front of 60 West 23rd Street for possession of burglar’s tools last Wednesday at 2:25 p.m. Williams was allegedly trying to cut off a bike lock from a locked bicycle with a pair of wire cutters.

Thirty-year-old Kieran Minihan was arrested for criminal trespassing inside the Union Square subway station last Sunday at 4:05 a.m. Minihan was allegedly inside the catwalk on the northeast side of the downtown 4 platform without permission to be there.

Thirty-year-old Matthew Mullen was arrested for grand larceny in front of 16 West 16th Street last Tuesday at 4:06 p.m. Mullen allegedly walked up to a woman and grabbed her cell phone from her hand, then fled on foot. He was subsequently stopped and apprehended by police. The victim didn’t have any injuries from the incident.

Thirty-one-year-old Christopher Bailey was arrested for assault in front of 37 West 20th Street last Saturday at 9:22 p.m. Bailey allegedly injured another man by hitting him across the face with his cell phone, causing a laceration to the victim’s right eye. Bailey was also charged with possession of a weapon, but it was not immediately clear what the weapon was.

Police arrested 23-year-old Zeina Hameda for grand larceny in front of 797 Sixth Avenue last Sunday at 5:30 a.m. In a previous incident in Queens, Hameda allegedly stole another woman’s purse, which contained her cell phone, four credit cards, a driver’s license and $186 in cash. Police said that the victim’s bag had been stolen when left unattended. The victim identified Hameda at the scene.