RED HOOK, Brooklyn (PIX11) — Immigration advocates and Mayor Eric Adams are once again at odds over his plan to build a temporary migrant relief center along one of New York City’s waterfronts.
All manner of city resources began descending on the Brooklyn Cruise Terminal in Red Hook Monday. It follows the decision by Adams to build a temporary migrant shelter there.
Different from the tents used previously at Orchard Beach and Randall’s Island, this time there are permanent structures to help house the 1,000 or so single men planned for the site. But immigrant advocates say the concerns remain the same.
“Placing people in an area of the city where they will not have access to reliable services and will not have access to transit,” said Murad Awawdeh, executive director of the New York Immigration Coalition (NYIC).
The NYIC would like the focus to shift to moving asylum seekers to more permanent housing, which was already a struggle for about 100,000 unhoused New Yorkers before the influx of migrants.
Speaking at an unrelated event, Adams continues to push back on critics of how he’s handled the influx of more than 41,000 asylum seekers to the city.
“When there is a crisis, you must use all your tools, and right now we are in a crisis,” Adams stressed.
The Brooklyn Cruise Terminal location will only be up and running until the weather gets warmer when cruises begin again. Adams said in the meantime he is doing all he can now to work with other mayors and pressure the federal government to step in.
Adams wants the feds to pay for costs being incurred, find other locations to decompress the shelter system, and make it easier for migrants to work and support themselves. NYIC echoed many of these same requests of the federal government.
The first few residents of the Brooklyn Cruise Terminal facility could arrive as early as next week. They will be single adults already in New York City staying at the Watson Hotel in Midtown — one of 77 contracted facilities the city said it is using to house migrants.