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As previously reported, LeFrak’s Gateway Plaza is supposedly going to help BatteryPark.TV and local businesses in our 2013 project of cleaning up the filthy strip of sidewalk and worn down storefront facades on South End Avenue. There has been tangible progress to report.
Two key hoses have been hooked up to allow the businesses to power wash the sidewalks. One is by the Cafe at Gateway entrance, and the other is by Black Hound. This progress is due to the residential building management, led by Mr. Gregg Tumminia. The SouthWestNY management is very eager to start helping with the washing and will be purchasing their own power washer. The Cafe is not so eager and might require some shame from the community.
Regarding the facade renovations that can be seen tested on the north facade of Chase bank, those are not such a done deal after all. This project is managed by a different LeFrak group that deals with commercial tenants. LeFrak has a long history of promising and not delivering. Currently, the 30-year old black metal frames and low-budget signage make the strip of commerce look more like a Queens LeFrak slum housing project than the very expensive section of real estate that Battery Park City really is. Until results are seen, one should assume the worst case scenario with LeFrak, and that no work will be done in a timely fashion.