The meeting took place at 110 Cabrini Blvd. and was called to order at 7:30 p.m. 5/24/99. Present were the following residents of member buildings: Suwineetha Gunasekera of 66 Overlook;  Michael Augenblick of 255 Cabrini Condominium; Geri Hopkins and Martha B. Ellington of Ft. Tryon Corp.; Peggy Morrissey of Cabrini Terrace; David Kach of Chittenden House; Anne-Marie O’Keeffe of Hudson View Gardens; Henry Stern of 360 Cabrini; Constance Cooper of 100 Overlook;  Michael Klein and Mike Zamm of 720-730 Ft. Washington; Julia Attaway of 350 Cabrini; Elizabeth Lorris Ritter and Marcella Calabi of Castle Village. Also present were Commercial Associate members Caroline Brown of William B. May; Geovanni Espinal of Geomart; William Ryder of Hilltop; and Gus Perry, Peter Simoes, and Louis Pulice of Stein-Perry Real Estate. Also present were Community Affairs Officer Tony Trinidad of the 34th Precinct; and John Wasiniak of 447 Ft. Washington Owners Corp.

The draft April minutes were reviewed and approved with minor typographical corrections.
Neighborhood News

"Family Fair" / Block Party:  will be held Sunday June 27, 1-5 p.m. on 190th between Fort Washington and Cabrini. (Raindate Saturday July 3.) There will be clowns, artists, storytellers, historians, a blood pressure tester, food from our local purveyors, etc., etc., etc. The Planning committee is working with PS/IS 187, the Fort Tryon Nursing Home, and the Community Board.

Summer Serenades (Thursday concert series in Bennett Park) are coming soon: Serenata Ensemble on 6/3 at 7pm, Bill Conway and the Swing Express 6/10 at 7pm, and The Hudson Sinfonietta on 6/17 at 7pm. The final concert will also include a special narrated performance of Peter and the Wolf at 6:30pm.
Jazz Series in Fort Tryon Park, the last three Sundays in August. There will also be fundraising dinners on Wednesdays starting in June. Watch for fliers.
There was positive media exposure for our neighborhood in the Times recently regarding real estate values.

There’s a new bulletin board in Bennett Park; the board on 187th St. has been updated to reflect HHOC’s contribution.

Discussion of illegal conversion of a courtyard into a storefront just below SW corner of Fort Washington Avenue & 181st Street. Proposed that issue be raised through CB12, and a violation complaint be filed w/ Department of Buildings.

There is a question of whether the city’s loss of the commuter taxes will cut into hope for co-op and condo tax relief. We will consider at the next meeting whether we should lobby on this subject.

More News, Discussion and HHOC Action

The A train is running express all night and on weekends now, on a temporary basis. Mike Zamm will draft a letter to the TA requesting that this improvement become permanent. The TA did respond to HHOC’s letter about the poor seating design of the new trains, defending the design; Elizabeth will follow up with TA and Sen. Schneiderman’s office.

Suwineetha presented a memo detailing maintenance and cleanup issues that need to be addressed by City Services. Elizabeth will forward these concerns to the Community Board office. The condition of the 187th St. steps was also added to the list.

We took advantage of Officer Trinidad’s presence to go over a number of police-related and quality-of-life issues, including questions of traffic control (double-parking on 181st between Cabrini/Ft. Washington, on 187th btw Ft. Wash/Pinehurst, on South Pinehurst);  noise at night which increases in the summertime (in the parks, drag racing); daytime noise and loitering on the commercial streets interfering with retail activity. This tied in with several other discussions. One was about the role of community activism, and the power of each individual to speak up and combat behavior that is rude or dangerous though not necessarily illegal. Another was about how to help give the youth something more productive to do than hang out on the sidewalk. Gus agreed to look into specific step that HHOC could afford within its budget and manpower to assist with youth support, especially in the way of sports activities. Officer Trinidad talked about the Police Athletic League and suggested that gym space would be at the top of the wishlist. HHOC pledged to work on this.

Anne Marie reported on Luis’ behalf, on the brainstorming re a neighborhood day supporting clean sidewalks ("The Doggie-Doo Campaign"). It was suggested that this initiative run a table at the 6/27 Family Fair. There will also be an effort to do outreach in the local school. Anyone with other ideas or interested in helping out, please use the Bennett Park Initiative number: 330-8682.

HHOC agreed to lend out the mailing list for a celebration at Stein-Perry real estate opening an exhibit of works by local photographic artists.
Watch for invitations.

Elizabeth reported on the success of the HHOC-sponsored School Board Candidate Forum.

Geri agreed to draft a letter in support of NYPresbyterian Hospital’s plan to build and run a hotel on 165th and Ft. Washington, which will provide many jobs for the neighborhood.

It was agreed that HHOC will donate $300 to the Jazz/Early Music Series in Ft. Tryon Park.

There was a discussion about the possibility of a dog run in the neighborhood. Two locations were mentioned: the not-yet-upgraded area of Fort Tryon Park west of Cabrini Blvd., and the south-west section of Javitz. There was support for the former and opposition to the latter. Marcella will pass this on to the neighborhood group involved. Anyone wishing to volunteer or otherwise weigh in on the matter, please contact HHOC to be put in touch with this initiative.
Geo suggested that the neighborhood have its own Millenium New Year’s Party. There could be a ball that drops over Corbin Circle; festivities in the parks and/or volleyball courts.There was much brainstorming about how to accomplish this and how great it would be to get together on this rather than have to go downtown for New Year’s. HHOC will act as one of hubs for brainstorming and will provide an email address for those who wish to contribute ideas or action: newyears@*nospam*

The next meeting will be held on Monday June 28th at 7:30pm in the offices of Stein-Pery Real Estate, Inc.,

764 West 181st Street, between Fort Washington Ave and Broadway.   (Note change in usual venue.)

The meeting was adjourned at 9:30 p.m.

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