Residents Lodge Parking, Traffic Complaints After Huge Event at Pier 36

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It was a chaotic scene last night at Pier 36/Basketball City, where the Satmar Hasidic sect was hosting a huge dinner. There was gridlock on the streets surrounding the large events space as  the drivers of school buses, tour buses and private cars looked for parking spaces.

We’ve been hearing from residents in the area, who were not at all pleased when “no parking” signs went up in public spaces around Basketball City a couple of days ago. An email to community leaders from the 7th Precinct indicated that 10,000 people were expected and that the “city (administration) granted (the organizers) permission to put ‘no parking’ signs up on multiple streets in the area… There will be a huge police presence at the location.” The event was expected to go until 1:30 a.m.

Nancy Ortiz, tenant leader t the Vladeck Houses, has been asking questions about the event all this week. We drove around the area with her last night. Her observations to us in a text message this morning: “Building ramp entrances on Water Street were blocked, hydrants were blocked on Water and Gouverneur streets, exhaust from idling buses was wafting into apartments, car alarms were going off from 10 p.m.” Ortiz said, “It was just a mess. This is mayoral patronage, affecting the quality of life for residents and community.”

According to the “News in Satmar” twitter feed, U.S. Sen. Chuck Schumer was among the guests.

 

— News In Satmar (@NewsInSatmar) December 21, 2016

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Local residents have been sending us photos. Via Facebook, Y Ay Sin, noted: “It’s a shame what’s going on at Basketball City tonight. They took up all the public parking and blocked all the sidewalks for a religious event! Montgomery Street, Water Street and Gouverneur Slip, plus no sidewalk space for anyone to walk.”

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William Coloma sent along photos that showed cars parked on sidewalks and blocking fire hydrants. He complained to 311 last night but received a reply stating, “The police department responded to the complaint and with the information available observed no evidence of the violation at that time.”

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UPDATE 8:50 a.m. Coloma points to the following item that popped up around midnight on the @NyCityAlerts twitter feed.  An officer was struck by a vehicle.  

UPDATE 4:52 p.m. According to the 7th Precinct, the driver who struck the officer was not an attendee of the Pier 36 event. He’s going to be all right. The officer, from 83rd Precinct detectives squad, hurt his hand and leg. 

 

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