Community Boards Hold Joint Meeting Over Chinatown High-Rise Jailhouse
Hyperlocal pressure over the proposed “community-based” jailhouse for Chinatown has resulted in yet another public session. This one, a joint effort between the two affected Community Boards, will further open the floor for discussion.
Community Boards 1 and 3 are set to host a joint event tonight to further unpack plans for the high-rise cell block at 80 Centre Street. The Mayor’s Community Affairs Unit, Department of Corrections, and the Mayor’s Office of Criminal Justice will together host a presentation about the new jail system. The meeting precedes a more high-profile town hall slated for next Wednesday (September 12), sponsored by Councilwoman Margaret Chin, who reportedly supports the endeavor.
As previously reported, Mayor de Blasio recently unveiled the draft proposal to close down and replace the Rikers Island prison system over the next decade. His so-called “roadmap to closing Rikers” features new jail facilities throughout the five boroughs. Here in Chinatown, the city has chosen 80 Centre Street, which would see a 430-foot tower with roughly 1,500 beds for the incarcerated, plus a day room, activity room, counseling services, and potentially outdoor space. The new construction would also pull double duty with offices for the Manhattan DA’s office.
Meanwhile, neighbors still allege that the closure of Rikers has more to do with real estate than actual criminal justice reform.
Tonight’s meeting is at 1 Centre Street, 6:30pm.