Town Hall Meeting 2500 Williamsbridge Road

 There was a proposal by Carnegie Hill Institute for a drug treatment center at the vacant 2500 Williamsbridge Road site previously occupied by Eastern Abstracts. At the Community Board 11 Leadership Committee meeting of October 17th  it was determined to have a Town Hall meeting on Thursday November 7th. The place to hold the Town Hall meeting would be the nearby Institute for Special Education located at 999 Pelham Parkway North.

Sonny Vitaj the realtor for 2599 Williamsbridgre Road announces that another tenant has been found for 2500 Williamsbridge Road

 On the way to the town hall meeting a couple of things happened. Councilman Mark Gjonaj was quoted on October 25th “The Deal was killed” regarding the 2500 Williamsbridge Road site in a Bronx newspaper. Gjonaj was quoted again”Now they want to put it on Esplanade” referring to a long vacant Jewish Synagogue and community center at 2440 Esplanade Avenue. Three different flyers appeared in the area of Community Board 11. One flyer was distributed around the Jewish Center with the 2440 address only. One flyer was distributed around the 2500 Williamsbridge Road site, and there was a third flyer with a name of a CB 11 member on it with both possible sites. I was given the third flyer in the CB 11 office where an unidentified woman said that she would be putting up those flyers south of Pelham Parkway.

Community Board 11 Chairman Al D’Angelo introduces Councilman Gjonaj.

November 7th came with an estimate of 700 people attended on a rainy night. There had to be two sessions due to the capacity of 300 people. The outcome of the Town Hall meeting was that the 2500 Williamsbridge Road site was not going to Carnegie Hill, and Councilman Gjonaj said that he wants to restore 2440 Esplanade to a community center. Since Councilman Gjonaj was quoted saying 2500 Williambridge Road was not going to happen, why was 2440 Esplanade all of a sudden added to the meeting, and why did the town hall go on if the property on the agenda, and why was the meeting not cancelled. 

Councilman Gjonaj trying to quiet down the crowd.

Upon checking with the District Manager of CB 11 his answer was that the community board was not notified of any change in 2500 Williamsbridge Road only to find out at the Town Hall meeting. 2440 Esplanade was a rumor to which he could not remember when the board was told adding that there was no formal notice to the board . Also that the flyer with the CB 11 member on it which I received at the board office was from a private citizen and not the community board.

It seems funny that after the Pelham Parkway Neighborhood meeting Councilman Gkonaj told me that CB 11 knew about 2500 Wiliamsbridge Road two weeks before the town hall meeting. Certain members of the community want to know why the board held the Town hall meeting when they were told by Councilman Gjonag two weeks ahead of the meeting? 

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