Crossing Ft. Independence Street in Kingsbridge Heights is dangerous for everyone — kids, adults, and drivers. There are no crosswalks in 2 essential areas. Time for the city act. If you live, work, or go to school in the area – or just plain care – sign this petition and share link with others. We want the city’s Department of Transportation to act ASAP. Thanks!
City Limits reports (includes a video): Tenants and organizers of the Northwest Bronx Community and Clergy Coalition gathered at the Bronx Housing Court last Thursday to protest what they say is a growing crisis: landlords harassing tenants by bringing them to housing court in hopes of pushing them out and raising rents.
(My wife, Margaret Groarke, long involved with the Coalition, is interviewed in this article and video. She cares a lot about housing in the borough as do I.)
Tonight’s BronxTalk will feature the proposal to rezone and rebuild 75 blocks on and around Jerome Avenue from 165th to 184th streets. It’s the third edition of the program in the past five weeks that will be dedicated to this important and controversial project. Several groups have begun organizing to make sure the neighborhoods surrounding Jerome Avenue play a role in determining what zoning changes, if any, are eventually made by the city. CASA, Northwest Bronx Community and Clergy Coalition, Latino Pastoral Action Center and United Auto Merchants are among them. Tonight’s show will feature the district managers of Bronx Community Board’s 4 and 5. Hosted by Gary Axelbank, BronxTalk is seen live Monday nights at 9 p.m on BronxNet’s channel 67 and Fios 33.
Tenants, with the help of the Northwest Bronx Community and Clergy Coalition, are battling the month-long lack of cooking gas in many of their apartments at 85 Strong Street, which is close to Lehman College. CBS-NY had this story. Tenants formed this Facebook page. The Coalition had a meeting with the tenants last Wednesday and by Friday 80 percent of the building got its gas back. There are 72 units in the building and there are currently 96 code violations, according to the city’s Department of Housing Preservation and Development on its website.
350.org estimates that 310,000 people took part in the People’s Climate March on Sunday to push desperately needed worldwide climate change action. Bronxites supplied a significant contingent. A reported 100 people from Riverdale’s Manhattan College took part, as did members of New Day Church in Bedford Park, La Finca del Sur, and South Bronx Unite, a coalition firmly focused on preventing Fresh Direct from moving its truck-heavy HQ to Mott Haven. (I’d love to know of any other Bronx groups, organizations, schools, clubs, etc. that took part in the Climate March. If you can send that info and a good photo to firstname.lastname@example.org, I’ll do my best to get them up here. Thanks!)
My family took part with Bronx pals and their kids (from left my daughter Devin, and her friends Shoshana, Frieda and Bronwyn; my wife Margaret Groarke, active in the Northwest Bronx Community and Clergy Coalition stands behind them).
I met these cool guys, artists from Marble Hill, Bronx (Richard Grunn) and nearby Inwood demonstrating melting ice. They attracted a ton of shots from marchers.
Again, if you know of any other Bronx groups that took part, send info and pic to email@example.com. Thanks!
This spring the Occupy movement is going local and if you need any more evidence that there is no central authority dictating what offshoot groups should do, look no further than the differing missions of efforts in Brooklyn and the Bronx.
As the Brooklyn Bureau (published by City Limits) reported today, a diverse group of community residents in Sunset Park are beginning to gather to strategize on local issues — such as school closures, loss of a Head Start program, etc. Organizers are translating materials into several languages to reach that neighborhood’s incredibly diverse population.
Here in the Bronx, three grassroots organizations have bigger corporate and government targets in mind, a strategy more in tune with demonstrators in Zuccotti Park and those who occupied similar public spaces in cities around the country last fall. Mothers on the Move, the Mary Mitchell Family and Youth Center, and the Northwest Bronx Community and Clergy Coalition — all of which already focus on local projects — are gearing up for a day-long training session this Saturday, April 14, at St. Simon Stock Church. Below is a letter from event organizers with details.
Yet another chapter is beginning in the two-decade old development saga at the Kingsbridge Armory. Proposals for the facility are due in later this week and whether this latest try at reimagining the landmark will stick and work is anyone’s guess. The Northwest Bronx Community and Clergy Coalition, which has been laying down its visions for the Armory since the late 1990s is holding a rally there tomorrow night at 6 p.m (corner of Kingsbridge Road and Reservoir Avenue). They’re calling again for living wage jobs and also for community space, opportunities for small businesses and no big-box retail. All that stuff got a little buried in the push last time around for what ended up mainly as a living wage campaign. That fight successfully buried the mayor’s proposal for a Related shopping mall at the Armory (a la Gateway near Yankee Stadium) as a new borough president, Ruben Diaz, Jr. got in front of an organized, union-backed campaign. The Council defeated the mayor’s plan handily, which is a real rarity in land use issues.
I’ll have a lot more to say about this as I’ve been covering the Armory since 1993 when District 10 Superintendent John Rehill wanted to see a massive complex of public schools there right after the National Guard handed over the keys of the head house and drill hall to the city. In the meantime, if you’re interested, here’s a link to a bunch of stories (67 actually) about the Armory that I and other wrote for the Norwood News, and my detailed take on what was going on at the time the Council defeated the mall plan.