One of former Mayor Giuliani’s top aides will fight the Bloomberg Administration’s $440-million plan to reopen the Brooklyn House of Detention and double the jail’s capacity.
Former Deputy Mayor Randy Mastro will represent neighbors who are enraged that the city will reopen and expand the Atlantic Avenue jail, which was shuttered in 2003, without an environmental impact review.
Furthermore, the plan “directly undermines the progress Downtown Brooklyn has made,” Mastro told The Brooklyn Paper, referring to the booming neighborhoods around the Boerum Hill lockup. “The city made the right decision five years ago when it closed the prison.”
Residents and pols said they’d rather see Mayor Bloomberg sell the valuable Downtown property, but the city remains committed to the plan and will soon choose an architect.
“There are essential city services that need to be delivered whether the real estate market is hot or not,” said Deputy Commissioner Stephen Morello of the Department of Correction. “Why not sell Prospect Park for development?”
The city says it needs to expand the House of D because the criminal justice system works better when inmates are close to the courts, their families, lawyers and social service providers. Currently, such prisoners are housed on the remote and crumbling Riker Island gulag.
©2008 Community News Group
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