Multi-agency raid closes Pelham Parkway stables

Department of Sanitation crews dismantled horse trailers in a mid-day raid conducted during the week of October 6 at a former horse stable on Pelham Parkway South that was encroaching on city-owned property. Photo courtesy of Councilman Jimmy Vacca’s office

A horse stable that has been part of the Pelham Parkway community for decades was closed by city agencies when it was discovered that the owner had set up his business on city property.

For those in search of having their child taking a ride on a pony, it was often possible to go to a stable located on the corner of Pelham Parkway South and Stillwell Avenue for a little adventure.

However, the acre-plus horse farm at the end of the 1600-block of Pelham Parkway South was dismantled by the city when it was discovered that the owner had been encroaching on an un-mapped city street belonging to the Department of Transportation for at least 25 years.

The Department of Sanitation lead a task force last week, which effectively disabled the stable, as both horses and their lodgings were seized in the mid-day raid.

“The whole area where there were horse rides is a city street, which the horse owners squatted on,” said a spokesman for Councilman Jimmy Vacca. “This action removed many horses.”

Vacca’s office confirmed that they had reached out to the Mayor’s office, which coordinated the multi-agency sting that included DSNY, DOT, and the Department of Parks and Recreation.

“They hauled away all of the trailers where the horses used to be,” the spokesman said. “Parks is willing to accept responsibility for the land, if DOT doesn’t.”

Community Board 11 has studied possible uses for the parcel, and various proposals have been floated in the past year, but nothing has come from the talk.

The DSNY confirmed that they did indeed take part in removing the horses and trailers during the week of October 6, at the request of Mayor Bloomberg’s office.

“The cleanup was done by DSNY as part of a multi-agency task force,” sanitation spokeswoman Kathy Dawkins said.

The Department of Transportation declined to say whether or not they would turn the area over to parks to create more green space.

“The stables were encroaching on city property, so they were issued violations and fines for that encroachment,” said DOT spokesman Craig Chin. “We have no plans for that area right now.”

The Department of Parks and Recreation did not comment on this matter as of press time.

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