Crews from ConEd, the FDNY and the Office of Emergency Management are on the scene along 10th Street between Avenue B and Avenue C. (The street is closed to traffic for now.)
Workers are examining a large crack in the east-facing wall of the long-empty P.S. 64.
@_elkue has been tweeting from the scene...
Buildings Department inspecting the crack. That is one big ass crack. pic.twitter.com/Qardx5JV3A— Liam Quigley (@_elkue) February 6, 2019
No word just yet about how serious this might be. The building has fallen into disrepair in recent years.
Update on 350 E 10th Street (aka CHARAS):— Carlina Rivera 利華娜 (@CarlinaRivera) February 6, 2019
- NYC DOB on scene to assess structure
- Residents of 2 adj. bldgs temporarily evacuated
- M8 bus rerouted
- 10th St. bet. Aves B/C remains closed
One thing clear: owner has neglected to take care of this property. More updates soon!
Developer Gregg Singer bought the former P.S 64 and CHARAS/El Bohio community center property from the city during an auction in 1998.
Singer has wanted to turn the landmarked property into a dorm called University Square, which continues in a holding pattern while the DOB maintains a Stop Work Order on the building.
You can read this post for more background on the 20-plus-year P.S. 64 drama.
Updated 7 p.m.
The city gave the all-clear earlier in the afternoon. Curbed has more here, including comments from Singer...
“It’s all political. This is part of a concerted effort to put pressure on us,” Singer told Curbed. “I was just at the building. There’s definitely cracks—that we were already aware of—that will be pointed and repaired, but there’s no immediate danger.”
After surveying the building, city inspectors determined that the building is safe but did issue a violation to Singer for failure to maintain the exterior facade for cracks observed on the corner of the building at the third floor, a DOB spokesman said.
“DOB Engineers on site have inspected the entire building, and have found that the building is not in imminent danger of collapse, and does not currently pose a danger to the public,” said DOB spokesperson Andrew Rudansky in a statement. The vacate orders at the evacuated buildings have been lifted.
Updated 7:15 p.m.
City Councilmember Carlina Rivera's office released this statement...
Following this morning’s emergency evacuation of two residential buildings adjacent to CHARAS/El Bohio, Councilwoman Carlina Rivera, Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer, elected officials, community leaders, and neighbors will gather tomorrow to call on Mayor Bill de Blasio to immediately take action in light of these new, potential structural and safety concerns.
This morning, the Department of Buildings issued a violation to the owner of the long-empty former P.S. 64, Gregg Singer, for failing to maintain the building's exterior after DOB engineers found cracks in the corner of the building on the third floor. In addition to evacuating the adjacent buildings, firefighters and Con Ed officials had to be called to the scene as well.
CHARAS/El Bohio, also known as the old P.S. 64, was auctioned off by Mayor Rudy Giuliani 20 years ago and has remained vacant ever since. Singer, the purchaser and current owner has not adequately maintained this landmark building, allowing it to deteriorate to its current condition. At a Council District 2 Town Hall in 2017, Mayor de Blasio announced that his administration would take steps to re-acquire this building. No substantive updates have been provided on this issue since then.
The gathering of local elected officials starts at 10:30 a.m. tomorrow outside the building at 350 E. 10th St.