Yesterday, at a NYC City Planning Department public hearing, the Rev. A.R. Bernard described the area surrounding his East New York megachurch, Christian Cultural Center (CCC), when it first opened its doors in the community.
“When we purchased this property back in the ’90s, this was a sex trafficking corridor, drugs, prostitution and gangs,” he recalled, noting that CCC helped to transform the area.
“We are excited about the opportunities ahead,” the minister continued. “Urban Village is one of those opportunities.”
Bernard envisions creating a development, which he dubbed “Urban Village,” on 10.5 acres of CCC’s property located on Flatlands Avenue near Starrett City.
It would include more than 2,100 rent-stabilized residential units for low to middle-income residents, along with other impressive amenities. He described it as a “mixed-income, livable, walkable, sustainable community that includes homeownership opportunities without displacement.”
Isaiah Thomas, a 23-year-old man who has lived in East New York since 2000, stated that crime and negative influences in the community compelled his family to send him away to boarding school and college. He praised Bernard for helping to turn around the community.
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