4 THE QUEENS COURIER • MAY 11, 2017 FOR BREAKING NEWS VISIT WWW.QNS.COM Photo courtesy of Keller Williams NYC Therapy group buys F.H. riding school BY ROBERT POZARYCKI firstname.lastname@example.org / @robbpoz An equestrian center in Forest Hills has been sold to a nonprofi t organization that off ers horseback experiences to individuals young and old with special needs. GallopNYC has purchased Lynne’s Riding School at 88-03 70th Rd. — between Ursula Place and Sybilla Street, and a short trot from Forest Park — for $3 million in a deal that Keller Williams NYC’s ReisNYC Team brokered. Th e 10,000-square-foot site has been renamed GallopNYC Forest Hills and will be used to provide therapeutic equestrian programs for individuals with autism spectrum disorder, cerebral palsy, visual impairment, Down syndrome, learning disabilities and other physical and cognitive challenges. Th e nonprofi t group operates three other locations in Queens, Brooklyn and the Bronx. Prior to the transaction, GallopNYC had been renting horses from Lynne’s Riding School for its therapeutic programs. GallopNYC has certifi ed instructors and trained volunteers who provide riders with lessons designed to build physical strength, develop problem-solving skills and improve social skills. “Serving an average of 500 riders each week and rising, the acquisition of the new site will allow us to double the number of our riders within two years,” said James Wilson, GallopNYC’s director of operations. “Th is is a game changer and transformative to our organization. More New Yorkers with disabilities waiting for lessons can now be served. We couldn’t have expanded had it not been for this purchase.” Along with closing the deal, Dr. David Reis (who’s also a cardiologist with 27 years of private practice) and Raymond Reis III of ReisNYC Team agreed to donate 100 percent of their commission to GallopNYC, and Keller Williams NYC provided a matching donation. Sewer backups anger Whitestone BY SUZANNE MONTEVERDI email@example.com / @smont76 Heavy rains last week caused sewer backups in Whitestone that left a number of basements fl ooded with sewage — and homeowners in the neighborhood are demanding answers. Dozens of residents living in homes along 10th Avenue between 152nd and 154th Street spent their weekend cleaning up sewage that poured into their homes through basement pipework, according to homeowner Jeanmarie Golden. Golden, who moved to the neighborhood with her husband just last December, said the fl ooding in her home began sometime between 11 a.m. and noon on May 5. “Our basement is full of sewage, so we have to have it disinfected,” Golden said. “Since we just moved in December, a lot of our stuff was still in boxes. We had to throw a lot of it out.” Since the end of February, the NYC Department of Design and Construction (DDC) has been working on a project to upgrade aging infrastructure and sanitary interceptor sewer pipes at the location. Aff ected residents, who say nothing like this has ever happened before, believe Friday’s sewage fl ooding is linked to the city agency’s infrastructure project. Th e sewage situation took place at the same time as a substantial rainstorm, which brought signifi cant fl ooding to the area. Still, when talking to longtime homeowners on the block, Golden said, not one said they’ve seen sewage fl ooding in their home like that before. Aft er residents on the block fi led 311 complaints on Friday, Golden explained, the DDC arrived that aft ernoon. Th e city agency said they did not believe the fl ooding was linked to the project, but would update homeowners on Monday. As of Monday aft ernoon, Golden said, residents have not heard back. Th e homeowner also said she saw contractors on the block packing up construction materials used for the project. “Everyone was swamped,” said James Martino, a Whitestone resident of 20 years. “We pretty much live in the lowest part of the area; all of the sewage fl ows down towards us.” Martino’s son, who lives in the basement area, lost most of his belongings in the fl ooding, including electronics, expensive clothing and his bed. “He lost everything four inches and below,” Martino said. “Now, he has no room to sleep in.” Th e homeowner also echoed Golden’s point that no amount of rainfall has ever resulted in such sewage fl ooding. Martino said he and other residents on the block have spent hours discarding destroyed property and paying for cleanup out of pocket. Now, Martino said, homeowners are Photo provided by Jeanmarie Golden concerned the sewage fl ooding will happen again and want to see that someone is held accountable. “DDC blames the contractor; contractor tries to put the blame on city,” Martino said. “I want to make sure the city doesn’t let the contractor get away with this if they’re at fault; and if the city is responsible, they have to be responsible.” In a statement to QNS, a spokesperson for the DDC attributed the sewage fl ooding to Friday’s rain storm. “Th e re-lining of the sewer was completed earlier this month,” a spokesperson for the DDC said. “However, due to the high volume of rain on Friday, the stormwater capacity of the sewer system was exceeded, as it was in many areas of the city during Friday’s intense storms.” “Th e sewer system is built to a specific capacity,” the spokesperson continued. “Friday’s rainfall exceeded the capacity of the system.” Flooding in Golden’s basement on May 5. Former Jewish center becomes Korean nonprofi t’s offi ce BY SUZANNE MONTEVERDI firstname.lastname@example.org @smont76 A Korean nonprofi t organization has taken over the site of the former Bayside Jewish Center. According to public records, Korean Community Services of Metropolitan New York (KCS) acquired the deed to the property at 203-05 32nd Ave. in February. Th e location will serve as the the organization’s main offi ce and headquarters. In recent weeks, KCS signage has gone up on the side of the building. Th e organization has also fi led permits with the Department of Buildings (DOB) for renovations. According to the KCS website, the nonprofi t reached an agreement to buy the facility for approximately $7.5 million, plus $700,000 in maintenance fees. Th e group sold their previous headquarters in Flushing for $4.5 million and held a capital campaign to raise remaining funds needed to purchase the property. Th e nonprofi t off ers senior, education, immigration, workforce development and public health services. Th eir mission is “to be a bridge for Korean immigrants and the wider Asian community to fully integrate into society and overcome any economic, health and linguistic barriers so that they become independent and thriving members of the community.” Th e Bayside Jewish Center site was the source of some controversy in recent years. Aft er the congregation, which had been at the site since 1960, left the location in 2015, a proposal to turn the site into a 730-seat high school was put forth by the School Construction Authority. Th e plans were met with opposition from residents: locals and elected offi - cials rallied against the proposal and Community Board 11 voted overwhelmingly in opposition. Th e School Construction Authority eventually withdrew the plans in November of 2015. Th e Bayside Jewish Center congregation has since merged with the Hollis Hills Jewish Center and opened the Hollis Hills Bayside Jewish Center at 210-10 Union Tpke. last year. Photo by Suzanne Monteverdi/QNS Korean Community Services has put up signage at the former Bayside Jewish Center.
To see the actual publication please follow the link above