The halfway house at 104 Gold Street. Photo by Barbara Eldredge
A controversy is unfolding around the proposed rezoning of P.S. 8 and P.S. 307, and one of our readers reminded us of a detail we’d forgotten: A federal halfway house sits just a block from P.S. 307 elementary school.
“DUMBO MUST UNITE,” the commenter wrote in response to our post about the rezonings. “I don’t want [students] to have to walk past the federal halfway house, where some very violent parolees are living… just to get to school.”
Brownstoner did a little digging, and found that the halfway house at 104 Gold Street is on a federal contract set to expire in 2016, and may not get renewed. To clarify, a federal halfway house is defined as housing for parolees from federal prisons. It will be interesting to see if the proposed rezoning of students from overcrowded, high-performing P.S. 8 to P.S. 307 will cause increased complaints regarding P.S. 307’s vicinity to both the halfway house and the Farragut Houses.
The Gold Street facility served as a Farragut Tenants Day Care Center until 2010, after which it sat vacant until reopening as the 161-bed halfway house, operated by Community First Services. According to a 2012 New York Times profile of the building, Community First Services has done a less-than-stellar job of running the space, with no services offered besides bed and board. In addition to the lack of job-search help or counseling, the house also has a history of corruption, drug use, and runaways, according to the story.
What do you think — should the presence of this halfway house be considered in the rezoning conversation? Should a halfway house have ever been so close to the school?
P.S. 307. Photo by Barbara Eldredge
Photo by Google