BROOKLYN, N.Y. (PIX11) — New York City has exceeded the capacity to house migrants from the southern border in its temporary housing system, Gov. Kathy Hochul said on Saturday.
She’s calling on the federal government to make its facilities in the city available to accommodate asylum seekers. The governor named Floyd Bennett Field as a potential place to house asylum seekers and others migrating to New York.
Some New Yorkers responded to the suggestion with a degree of skepticism.
“No one can stay here as an asylum seeker,” said Ruby Duncan, a 32-year resident of Brooklyn. “It’s not designed for someone to live.”
She spoke with PIX11 News while waiting for the Q35 bus, the only one that serves Floyd Bennett Field, the former airfield that’s now part of the Federal Gateway National Recreation Area.
Floyd Bennett Field is over 1,000 acres large. By comparison, Central Park is 843 acres.
It’s not clear how migrants would be housed at the park, but Duncan vocalized something said by other local residents about the federal public land in southeast Brooklyn: It’s not near many vital resources that migrants may need.
“The closest hub is Kings Plaza, which is about 2 miles [away],” she said. “Other than that, there’s nothing.”
Kayla Norris was also visiting Floyd Bennett Field on Saturday. She and her young family had come from the Bronx. She also mentioned that there’s only one bus serving the facility, but said that she was impressed with its frequency.
Still, she added, if migrant families were to be housed at the federal park, they might be hard-pressed.
“Someone who is coming from a different country would be like, ‘This is nice,’ but in a way feel stuck,” she said. “I wouldn’t know where to get diapers, wipes, juice, stuff like that unless it’s provided for them.”
The White House has not made a formal public response to Hochul’s letter at this time.