To the Editor:
As a concerned neighbor on the 107th Street block, I want to thank you for your article on the homeless shelter proposed for 237 W. 107th St. It is of great concern to all of us in the neighborhood who have spent many years and long hours to make it the pleasant street that now accommodates a thriving community.
The story that should be further investigated is how the city and the Department of Homeless Services could knowingly enter into a partnership with a landlord who has so many open violations for that address alone. There is an open complaint for lack of permits, as well as overflowing dumpsters. Particularly troubling, following the death of the young man who fell from the roof last year, is that a complaint was apparently filed about the door/roof access and was resolved. To this day, the same vat of roof tar, a cinder block and brick are in the same position as they were when they were used to prop open the door back then, and in all the preceding months when the roof was used for parties.
Recently, police were called to the address. Three squad cars and an ambulance were at the site for quite some time. The superintendent of 245 W. 107th St. had a confrontation with two female residents of 237. During the evening of the last snowstorm, a stretch school bus pulled up and at least 15 women carrying their belongings in black plastic bags were quickly escorted into the building.
As many have said, no one in the neighborhood is opposed to finding solutions to homelessness. The continuing concern is how it is being done, and in particular with a landlord who has a long and troubling record.
Robert V. (last name withheld)
West 107th Street
Letters have been edited for clarity, style and brevity.
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