Redevelopment Authority to send letters to property owners

At this afternoon’s Redevelopment Authority meeting, it was unanimously approved to direct the community development specialist,  Zohrab Khaligian, to send letters to the property owners of the Wilson Heights neighborhood, informing each property owner of the actual assessed value of their home, and asking them if they are interested in selling.  Earlier this year, the city also sent letters to these same property owners, informing them that their anticipated assessments were being reduced from prior levels.  At that time, the letters informed the property owners that the assessed values ranged from $115,000 to $125,000.  These properties are located south of 48th Street on 37th Avenue.  Most homes are now assessed in the neighborhood of $115,000, except for the two corner properties, which are bigger and have a slightly higher assessed value.

Redevelopment Authority recently acquired a property for $125,000, and the demolition costs will be another $20,000.  Click here to read this article:  Redevelopment Authority Ok’s Purchase of Property.

Doug Williams, a new commissioner, commented that he believed it would be safer to get the demolition done as soon as possible so as not to attract squatters or kids, etc.  It might then become a safety issue.


Two other agenda items had to do with the city preparing two separate $1/year lease agreements for a garden at 5815 – 5th Avenue and a dumpster at 515 – 58th Street.  Both lease agreements will contain a clause so that either party can terminate the lease with 30 days’ notice. Both agreements will be with the tenant(s)/landlord(s).  At such time that the property is sold by the city or new tenant(s)/landlord(s) are involved, the leases will have to be terminated, and possibly new leases re-written if the parties wish to continue the arrangements.

The garden has already been planted on the city’s property, and will be maintained by the tenant. Only the 15-foot garden portion of the property will be leased to the tenant/landlord.  The remainder of the property will continue to be maintained by the city.

The property tenant/landlord of the dumpster will be responsible for keeping the area near the dumpster clear of trash and snow.

Eric Migrin wanted to know if any thought had been given to community gardens.  Khaligian responded that Alderperson Michael Orth had expressed some interest in pursuing this, but he was not present at tonight’s meeting to discuss it.




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