Senator Dilan recently joined North Brooklyn officials, children and seniors, on the steps of City Hall to urge Mayor de Blasio and the City Council to preserve a community asset at 211 Ainslie Street in Williamsburg.
Advocates and officials are supporting a plan to purchase the building so the senior and children services that the community center has provided for more than 40 years can continue. Without additional city capital, a senior center, daycare and universal Pre-K programs—already funded through the city—will be lost if the building’s owners move forward with a plan to redevelop the site.
“Across the city, officials are looking for new opportunities to expand child and senior services and ways to preserve existing programs. Williamsburg has provided the best of both for more than 40 years at the Swinging Sixties Senior and Small World Child Care centers. The centers at Ainslie Street should be looked to as a model for the development of similar programs and services throughout the city; not as a investment opportunity for high-priced condominiums,” said Senator Martin Malavé Dilan.
More than 40 years ago public funds were used for public good, and the corner of Ainslie Street and Manhattan Avenue was transformed. Home to the Swinging Sixties Senior and Small World Day Care centers, 211 Ainslie Street has become a cornerstone of the Williamsburg community. Today this community asset could bear the brunt of North Brooklyn’s market boom.
The same public benefit that transformed the corner of Ainslie Street and Manhattan Avenue 40 years ago is alive and well today. And just as the case was then, it’s an institution worthy of public investment.