Poly Prep wants to close off part of Battery Avenue

Citing security issues, Poly Prep Country Day School has appliedto the city for permission to privatize a section of BatteryAvenue, and residents of the area are mixed in their reaction tothe idea.

If there were enough spots, I would not care, said John R, wholives on the block. If they make part of the street private, wewill have less spots. There is not enough parking here to beginwith.

But Mike Nomikos welcomed the news. The road should be closedbecause kids drag race down this block, he explained. I want itclosed.

Battery Avenue is a dead end street that ends adjacent to theFort Hamilton Army Base, as well as the school. Poly Prep officialswrote a letter to State Senator Marty Golden in June, saying thatthe block attracts all sorts of illegal activity, creating a hazardfor residents on the block, as well as the children at Poly Prepand those who live and work at the base.

We have solid evidence of illegal activity taking place atnight in the area we propose to gate, said Malcolm Farley,director of communications for Poly Prep. He said thatprostitution, drug use and drinking were among the mainconcerns.

This is not a criticism of our fine police precinct officers,but merely a recognition that police staffing does not permitround-the-clock policing in this remote location. Security reasonsfor Fort Hamilton are real, not manufactured, he added.

As this paper went to press, Community Board 10 was holding ajoint meeting of the Zoning and Land Use Committee and the Trafficand Transportation Committee regarding the issue. District ManagerJosephine Beckmann explained that the Poly Prep had applied to theDepartment of Citywide Administrative Services for a commerciallease agreement to fence off a section of Battery Avenue forprivate use.

Beckmann said that the board would issue an advisoryrecommendation at its general meeting on November 21, at therequest of the city’s Department of Transportation, which has tosign off on the proposal. Prior to that, she said, The public willhave the opportunity to comment and ask questions.

The CB 10 meeting will take place at the Norwegian ChristianHome, 1250 67th Street, beginning at 7:15 p.m.

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