Follow-Up Friday: Checking in on NYCHA gas outages, adding more green space

Monica Makes It Happen

HARLEM, Manhattan — Paula Cerda has three daughters and lives at the King Towers in Harlem.  

Every night is sandwich night. With no gas service for months, the city gave her a hot plate, so she says that’s what’s for dinner every night.

Cerda and her daughters are not alone in their frustration. Her entire building, building 41, hasn’t had gas service since April, families tell PIX11.

Gas outages are a problem across the city. According to NYCHA’s own website, 56 developments across the city have some gas outages as of Monday afternoon.

A NYCHA spokesperson confirmed to PIX11 the gas outage is affecting 125 units and is in the final stage of restoration. Gas service has been restored.  

From the floor of a children’s play area falling apart to no gas service for nine months, people who live here at the Glenmore Plaza Houses said they need repairs now.  

Marvin Fleming, Miriam Robertson, and Teddy German are long-time residents at the Glenmore Plaza Houses on Christopher Ave. and said their complaints are ignored.  

With the hot summer days, they worry about children’s safety when the sprinklers are turned on, and say there are cracks in the floor of their play area. “We follow the chain of command with the people we are supposed to and nothing has been done,” said Fleming. 

Even more frustrating, Fleming said several lines in his building haven’t had gas service for months, and no timeline for repairs.  

A NYCHA spokesperson told PIX11 News, “The gas at King Tower was restored on Monday and the play area at Glenmore Plaza was repaired on Wednesday. One of the gas lines at Glenmore Plaza is in the construction phase of restoration and the other is in the asbestos abatement phase of restoration. While we understand gas service interruptions are inconvenient, we also want to ensure our residents’ safety as we work to restore service as quickly as possible. We ask that all residents continue to use the MyNychaApp or call the Customer Contact Center at 718-707-7771 to create a work order ticket for any maintenance needs, including service interruptions.”  

NYCHA crews have started to fix the floors, and are cleaning up the development. 

More green space is coming to the Polo Grounds Towers in Harlem.

They call themselves the “Harlem Garden Ladies.” They are over a dozen moms and grandmas with their families creating more green space at their NYCHA development. “There’s a lot of positives but you never hear about it. We have more good here than negative,” said Barbara Williams, who lives at the Polo Grounds Towers, and started a neighborhood garden four years ago.  

Thanks to more than $30,000 from the Mayor’s Action Plan, together with the Neighborhood Safety Initiative, the residents are expanding and adding more green space.  

“Every little corner of this development will be beautified from the inside out,” said Deymis Baquero, a program manager with the Mayor’s Action Plan.  

These women say they are planting seeds and then watching the good in the community grow. 

If you have a story reach out to Monica Morales at monica@pix11.com 

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