Thursday, May 20, 2010

More on the East Harlem Media, Entertainment and Cultural Center

According to a press release from the New York Economic Development Fund the development will include:

* 30,000 square feet of cultural space celebrating East Harlem’s unique and diverse cultural heritage;
* More than 800 total housing units, 600 of which will be affordable to individuals or families with moderate or middle incomes;
* A mid-block public plaza;
* A minimum of 24,000 square feet of landscaped open space;
* 50,000 square feet of retail space reserved for locally-owned businesses at below market rents;
* 250,000 square feet of class A office space;
* A 98,000-square-foot hotel; and,
* A $10 million local investment fund to assist small businesses and entrepreneurs that locate in the new development.

What do you think? Would you want to live in this complex?


  1. We need places like this in our community. It has such a diverse culture and should be shared with everyone! I am eager to see how this place turns out.

    Also, Gloria what is the best way to contact you? I sent you an email about a cafe in East Harlem...a restaurant that features dishes from 6 different countries. It is El Cafe at Museo del Barrio.

  2. East Harlem needs this BADLY, particularly the northern end around 125th Street. This will beautify our neighborhood and attract traffic (tax dollars) from people in other parts of the city. It will keep moderate-income people in the area, which will attract better retail, dining, and entertainment (we need more than nail salons, cell phone shops, and bad chinese restaurants). The hotel would also bring tourists to the area and expose our great neighborhood to the world. The people that are opposing this development are anti-progressives that want to keep our area's slum-like qualities in tact for their own benefit. EVERYONE with a long-term interest in East Harlem needs to fully support this.

  3. Dear Anonymous,

  4. Its a terrible idea. Its a Trojan horse for gentrification... This is what they did 5 years ago to Atlantic Avenue in Brooklyn. The result is Smith street, hipster central. If you want to elevate the social standings of your community it will take a collective effort to promote the importance of education, re-investing in local businesses and stop praying for tourism to stabilize your economy.

  5. "The people that are opposing this development are anti-progressives that want to keep our area's slum-like qualities in tact for their own benefit."

    We live in a capitalistic society, no one gives a hoot about anyone else. Who ever is proposing this complex has an incentive to do so. Who knows maybe its a completely altruistic operation in the interest of the locals.

  6. Bad idea! why? because when these new buildings come in the people that lived their for years will be forced to move because they cannot afford it...they are trying to turn harlem into downtown manhattan

  7. Typical BS comments from the anti-progressives. This project is not a trojan horse at all. Clearly the project is intended to perpetuate a controlled level of gentrification; there is no hiding that fact. I think that is a good thing. If you want to attract better quality retail and entertainment into East Harlem, you need a higher-income residential population.

    Mixed-income developments accomplish this goal, while at the same time ADDING (not replacing) moderate income housing units so existing East Harlem residents can stay in the neighborhood and improve their living conditions.

    Furthermore, the last commenter clearly doesn't know what he/she is talking about. Take a trip to the block where this project is occuring and OBSERVE. There is virtually no existing housing stock that is being razed. These are vacant and underutilized commercial lots that are going to be repositioned for the benefit of the entire neighborhood.

    East Harlem is moving forward, with or without you. If you want to live in a poor, dirty, and crime-ridden area, move to the South Bronx.