BY THE VILLAGE SUN | A rally to advocate for returning the old P.S. 64 — the former CHARAS El Bohio — to community use is set for Wed., March 15, from 11 a.m. to noon on the plaza east of City Hall.
The hulking former school building, at 605 E. Ninth St., just east of Tompkins Square Park, has sat empty for more than 20 years. Gregg Singer bought the formerly city-owned property at auction in 1998. However, his efforts to redevelop the place have repeatedly been frustrated by City Hall and community and local political opposition.
In January, State Supreme Court Justice Melissa Crane ruled that Singer’s lender, Madison Realty Capital, could move forward with foreclosure against Singer, and ordered that the structure be auctioned.
Madison is slated to hold a private auction Wed., March 22, at the Hilton New York Midtown Fifth Avenue, at 25 W. 51st St. Protesters plan to show up at 9:30 a.m. to try to block the sale.
Ken Toglia, a leader of the Guardians of Loisaida, has posted a petition on change.org calling for the auction to be stopped and for Mayor Adams to use eminent domain to reclaim the building. An update on the petition urges people to call Hilton’s Ethical Business Hotline, at 1-877-662-5825, “and tell them CHARAS is not for sale.”