Local elected officials are speaking out today to urge officials at the the Boys' Club of New York (BCNY) to postpone their plans to sell the Harriman Clubhouse building on 10th Street and Avenue A.
Per the media advisory:
Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer, Senator Brad Hoylman, Councilmember Carlina Rivera, Assemblymember Harvey Epstein, and representatives from Manhattan Community Board 3 will hold a press conference to demand that the Board of Trustees for the Boys Club of New York postpone the sale of the historic 117-year-old Harriman Clubhouse on East 10th Street.
Attendance at the Harriman Clubhouse, particularly from boys and young men from lower-income families, has increased in recent years despite claims of enrollment made by the board to justify the sale.
I first reported on the BCNY's plan to sell the Clubhouse. Under this plan, the 7-story clubhouse would remain in use by the BCNY through June 2019. (You can find more background here.)
According to a letter in June from BCNY Executive Director Stephen Tosh, they will look to rent space somewhere on the Lower East Side to continue with programming for Harriman members after the closure next summer. The letter also states that the sale of the East Village building will allow BCNY the opportunity to start new programs in other communities, including Brownsville, East New York and/or the South Bronx.
Last month, Hoylman and other local elected officials asked for a community meeting to hear more about the BCNY's plans.
As Patch reported yesterday, Tosh declined the meeting offer in a Sept. 14 letter. "Our role in the neighborhood defines us. It is also bigger than any one building. Wherever our East Village clubhouse is situated, we remain a vital part of an ever-changing area."
Hoylman told Patch: "We'd lose ... a crown jewel of youth and civic engagement precisely at a time in our city's and nation's history when we need these institutions for boys and young men. What we're concerned about is that its services might be non-centrally located and that the clubhouse would be converted into condominiums and hotels, which would be a double whammy for the community."
The rally starts at noon today outside 287 E. 10th St. between Avenue A and First Avenue.
Previously on EV Grieve:
Local elected officials urge Boys' Club officials to postpone sale of the Harriman Clubhouse
Boys' Club of New York selling East Village building; will remain open through June 2019