2017-05-19 / Front Page

Unlucky Living At 711

By Gail Johnson


Once considered a top-of-theline senior living development, tenants say that 711 Seagirt Ave. is a place where many are “afraid to live.” Once considered a top-of-theline senior living development, tenants say that 711 Seagirt Ave. is a place where many are “afraid to live.” The tenant meeting held on Thursday, May 11 at The Sand Castle, located at 711 Seagirt Ave. and commonly known as “711,” turned the tide for its residents.

According to tenants, what was once marketed as a top of the line senior living community has turned into an island of isolation.

The meeting, held inside the Roy Reuther Senior Center, was filled with more than 60 tenants – many in wheelchairs or holding on to walkers – there to voice their concerns about what they characterized as the poor quality of their lives in the development.

They also bemoaned the fact that the management of the building, Sarasota Gold, LLC. has refused to attend any of their meetings.

“In the five years I have lived here, they have attended two meetings,” said one tenant.

Looking for help, they contacted Anthony “Tony” Herbert – a candidate for NYC Public Advocate – to attend their tenant meeting and contact the necessary agencies to assist them.

Tenant President Edith Quinones, Vice President Gail Brannum, along with police officers from the 101st Precinct Maura Moore and Petrogalia, all listened to the tenants’ concerns.

The prevailing theme from those who spoke was that they said they felt unsafe in the building, and afraid to live there.

Complaints ranged from unknown people entering the building at all hours of the day and night and roaming the stairwells, hallways and atriums, to homeless people squatting in the lounge and sleeping there at night. Some said they are afraid of the drug dealers in the elevators.

Tenants say the intercoms to enter the building do not work and that there is inadequate security at the front desk. (There was no one on duty when this reporter entered the building to attend the tenant meeting. The door was open.)

One wheelchair-bound tenant spoke of her fears.

“I live with an aide,” she said. “In the middle of the night there are people banging on my door. I am afraid.”

Another tenant complained that the maintenance department does not have the necessary supplies it needs to do the repairs needed in her apartment. One tenant said that while waiting the half hour for her daughter to arrive to take her on an outing, she sat in the entry of the building alone; there were no security personnel on duty.

Many of the tenants voiced complaints about treatment by the on-site convenience store and pharmacy owner. There are reports of price gouging on the days when seniors receive their social security and disability checks and manufacturer prices printed on items being covered with higher price stickers.

After the tenants voiced their concerns about the deplorable conditions of the buildings, Herbert addressed the crowd.

“You should not have to live like this,” he said. “I pledge to you that I will do the work. This is a call to action. I will go after the city funding that the owners receive to ensure that they are doing their job. I will chastise their (bleep) to get them here to hear your concerns. Next Sunday, May 21, I will hold an emergency community rally here at 1:00 p.m. If you want change, you have to be willing to come out in support. I want 900 people outside these buildings. I don’t want to stand in front of these buildings in a rally by myself.”

In a telephone interview, Herbert said that “he would call in all the necessary agencies, the Buildings Department, the Department of Health, the Department of Consumer Affairs, the Mayor’s Office and the Borough Command to help these people who seem to have been forgotten. We’re going to sound the alarm.”

The Wave has learned from sources that Saratoga Gold has contacted several tenants and told them “there would be additional security and maintenance staff on premises. Management also told the tenants that they would attend the next meeting.

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The coalition of the

The coalition of the rockaways offers any help or assistance you need this is the problem of the politicians and the west cb14 pushing everything on the east of rockaways especialy the neighborhoods of color 4


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