The infamous jail closed in 2021 following years of complaints over dangerous conditions. 

NEW YORK (PIX11) — New York City Mayor Eric Adams’ administration wants permission from the feds to house migrants in Manhattan’s Metropolitan Correctional Center.

Daniel Perez, a top lawyer for Adams, expressed City Hall’s interest in using the defunct downtown Manhattan lockup in a letter sent to Gov. Kathy Hochul’s administration last week that listed off various sites the city believes it could use for housing migrants amid severe overcrowding in city-run shelters. 

Perez’s letter, a copy of which was obtained by the Daily News through a Freedom of Information Law request, specifically says the administration would like the federal government to give either the city or the state authority to place migrants in “closed correctional and transitional sites such as Metropolitan Correctional Center.”

The federal Bureau of Prisons, which runs the facility, said Thursday it could not provide any comment “concerning governmental correspondence” with the Adams administration about the downtown Manhattan jail. 

Fabien Levy, Deputy Mayor for Communications said Friday, “sadly all options are on the table. Two weeks ago, we saw heartbreaking scenes of people sleeping on the street outside [The Roosevelt Hotel]. 

A scene where Lauren B Jewler’s owner, Avi Behar confronted Levy at a press conference. “I’m going out of business by of this [expletive],” Levy barked, “My customers are afraid to come around.”   

Currently, 101,000 asylum seekers have come through New York City. Over half are still living in 202 shelters scattered across the five boroughs.  

The city says it has scouted three thousand potential sites to house migrants. Earlier this week Gov. Hochul rebuked Mayor Adams in a letter, saying he left several state options ignored. Something the mayor disputed while also denying there is no bad blood between the two democrats.  

“We don’t have any room for conflicts right now. I have to navigate this city out of this, and I do not have time to have displaced anger,” Mayor Adams said in a radio appearance Friday.  

The Legal Aid Society, which is involved in a lawsuit between the parties believes ultimately, it’s the state that should take the lead to solve this billion-dollar crisis.” 

“The governor really has to take charge. It is a statewide issue that needs to have a plan that serves everybody,” said Legal Aid attorney Joshua Goldfein.