Odyssey House facility approved

Facility to provide housing for low-income mentally ill. City Council approved the Planning Commission’s resolution adopted on September 8, 2004, allowing the construction of a six-story building with 50 units for low-income persons with mental illnesses. The Council’s action authorized the designation of an Urban Development Action Area and the transfer of six properties of City-owned land.

The project site, which is to be developed under the New York State office of Mental Health, is located on the north side of East 123rd Street between Park and Lexington Avenues in East Harlem. The site is part of the Park Avenue Urban Renewal Plan and comprises six City-owned properties totaling 1 0,000 sq.ft. Currently, the site contains underutilized vacant land and a vacant one-story garage, which will be demolished.

There were no speakers in opposition at the City Council’s public hearing on October 5, 2004, and the full Council approved the application on October 13, 2004 by a vote of 50 to 0.

ULURP Process: The Department of Housing Preservation and Development, as lead agency, issued a negative declaration on November 8, 2002. Manhattan Community Board 11 voted to approve the project on June 15, 2004, by a vote of 2 1 to 8, and Borough President C. Virginia Fields agreed on June 29, 2004.

At the August 1 1 , 2004 Planning Commission hearing, Commissioners Karen Phillips and Dolly Williams voiced concern about the over-saturation of facilities for homeless, addicts and transitional housing in the immediate area, asking Odyssey House if this had been taken into account. Odyssey House representatives stated that the organization has a solid record in East Harlem, which welcomed their three other facilities. Odyssey House pointed out that both Congressman Charles Rangel and Council Member Bill Perkins supported the project. The Commission unanimously approved the project on September 8, 2004.

Council Res. No. 631 (October 13, 2004); CPC Cal. No. 32, C 040438 HAM CUDAAP/disposition of land) (September 8, 2004), (Odyssey House: Durga Vallabhaneni, for Odyssey House; Miriam Gonzalez, for HPD; Architect: UAl). CITYADMIN


Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.