No more Turbine

No more Turbine
The wind turbine at 500 Baychester Ave. , which collapsed on a car Dec. 30, 2019 will not be put back up.
Photo by Kyle Vuille/Schneps Media

The controversial wind turbine in Co-op City that was blown down by gusty winds at the end of 2019 will not return.

On Thursday, February 6, Councilman Andy King, Senator Jamaal Bailey and Assemblyman Michael Benedetto held a press conference at the site, where it was announced that the turbine would not be rebuilt.

On Monday, December 30, the turbine collapsed sending another monopole on the property crashing into a parked car.

The structure was built at 500 Baychester Avenue, and joined two other smaller billboards as well as a 7-Eleven, a TD bank, a pharmacy and a Sherwin Williams paint store on the newly minted mini mall.

A 250-foot monopole supported the wind turbine.

The controversial monopole was constructed on a parcel at Bartow and Baychester avenues that retained a C7 zoning from the early 1960s when the property was a part of Freedomland, an amusement park.

“The Co-op City community will be happier as I proudly announce that the owner of the wind turbine has conceded and will not be rebuilding it here,” Councilman King said on Twitter. “The owner has also agreed not to reattach the third sign that faces into Co-op City resident’s windows. This is a major victory for Co-op.”

As part of King’s agreement with the property owner the monopole will remain.

Assemblyman Benedetto said Councilman King told him that the structure would support a light beam that would project various colored light straight up for special ocassions, much like the Empire State Building.

Senator Bailey told the Bronx Times he is glad the owner of the property came to his senses. The senator is all for helping the environment and clean energy, but this was out of character with the neighborhood, he stated.

The turbine was up for two weeks before it collapsed, so maybe that was a sign that it shouldn’t have been there in the first place, he said.

“It’s a relief that that this has taken place,” Bailey said. “I question the location. I was frustrated by the fact that it went up in the first place without community discussion. Simply because you can do something doesn’t mean you should do something.”

“I just don’t think that we should have had a structure of that nature in a residential community,” Benedetto said.

Matt Cruz, district manager of Community Board 10 stated that while he doesn’t oppose wind turbines, he found the turbine location inappropriate.

Elected officials and CB 10 fielded hundreds of inquiries from local residents questioning its installation.

Cruz, who hadn’t heard the news that the turbine would not be returning, said it was music to his ears. Putting it in the community without consulting theresidents was wrong and a quality of life issue, he noted.

“This board along with Councilman King has been in the trenches trying to put this issue to bed,” he said. “We’re happy the property owner has decided to go forward. This is a win for Co-op City as well as a win for the board here at CB10.”

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