CUNY spends M on ‘hole in ground’ in stalled construction project

CUNY spends $1M on ‘hole in ground’ in stalled construction project

The Metropolis College of New York will spend $1 million this yr to forestall a “gap within the floor” from flooding on the website of a long-stalled building challenge, The Submit has discovered.

The boondoggle is a results of authorities dysfunction after CUNY dug a basis for a brand new $300 million nursing college facility — that it by no means obtained the funding to truly construct.

The varsity hoped to erect the constructing for its Hunter School nursing and science program, subsequent to Memorial Sloan Kettering’s outpatient facility on the Higher East Facet.

However the funding bought tied up due to a dispute with state officers underneath former Gov. Andrew Cuomo.

The development website, positioned on a swath of land at East 73rd and 74th Streets between York Avenue and the FDR Drive, is boarded up with inexperienced fencing, and there’s cement overlaying up the “bowl tub” basis.

“It’s a gap within the floor that requires spending taxpayer {dollars} to forestall water injury. It’s a humiliation for Hunter, CUNY and state officers,” a CUNY insider mentioned.

Sources mentioned the challenge bought off to a foul begin when then-Mayor Michael Bloomberg and CUNY officers introduced the joint Sloan-Kettering/CUNY facility in 2012 — with out inviting or together with Cuomo. The then-governor’s title was not listed on the press launch.

Most of CUNY’s funding comes from the state and significantly so for capital building initiatives.

This was alleged to be the placement of the brand new Hunter School nursing and science program. J.C.Rice

The Submit first reported on the stalled challenge three years in the past. On the time, CUNY advocates and Cuomo officers blamed one another for the snafu.

CUNY is now on the hook to guard the “basis and bathtub, which should be dewatered and maintained till building of a brand new constructing begins” to adjust to metropolis constructing codes, in accordance with a request for proposals the college has despatched to bidders.

The annual upkeep value is $1 million, a CUNY spokesman confirmed.

A CUNY rep mentioned the plan stays in limbo, and that it should spend cash to take care of the positioning.

“CUNY is reviewing and updating the present plan to find out acceptable subsequent steps,” the spokesman mentioned.

The realm must be repaired to forestall water injury. J.C.Rice

Requested if funding has been secured on this yr’s state price range to erect the nursing college, the rep replied, “No.”

The recently-approved state price range contains $500 million for all new CUNY capital building, however the cash has not but been earmarked, sources mentioned.

Including insult to damage,  Memorial Sloan Kettering’ new 26-story outpatient clinic, the David H. Koch Middle for Most cancers, opened in 2019 on the shared land parcel with CUNY.

The town gave CUNY/Hunter School and Memorial Sloan Kettering the property in trade for the title to property at Hunter School’s Brookdale campus on East twenty fifth Avenue and First Avenue.

CUNY/Hunter thought of the prevailing nursing college constructing in Turtle Bay antiquated and had pushed for the possibility to construct a brand new website on the Higher East Facet.

Councilwoman Gale Brewer, who was then the Manhattan borough president, pushed for the challenge together with Hunter School president Jennifer Raab — and blamed Cuomo’s workforce for the debacle.

“What now we have is a gap within the floor that sits there for years,”  Brewer fumed on Sunday.

“Here’s what I care about — we’d like nurses on this metropolis. CUNY wants that area.”

A spokesman for state price range director Robert Mujica, who is also a trustee on CUNY’s governing board, mentioned in an announcement: “CUNY is growing a plan for this challenge and we look ahead to reviewing it on the acceptable time.”

Brewer mentioned the price of the challenge has doubtless escalated by a whole bunch of tens of millions of {dollars} due to delays.

In the meantime, Higher East Facet neighbors mentioned they’re not happy at having an deserted building website close by.

“I’ve truthfully by no means seen it however I don’t like the truth that it’s sitting there and never getting used for something productive,” mentioned DeiVonte Freeman-Jackson, 24.

Lara Roth-Biester, 51, who lives close by, expressed concern about losing taxpayer {dollars}.

“Appears like New York Metropolis. It’s corrupt from prime to backside,” she mentioned.

“It doesn’t shock me. I’m certain that’s not the one website within the metropolis that has this downside.” 

About Muji Sakawari

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