Back Inside the Long-Shuttered Allen Mall Bathhouse [PHOTOS]

Posted on: May 27th, 2016 at 5:12 am by
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The long-vacant Allen Mall Bathhouse is getting a deep scrub-down. As previously reported, the Parks Department last week commenced asbestos abatement activity with the purpose of returning the decades-old facility to community use. Namely, a “comfort station” that offers an affordable food stand and (possibly) bike repair station.

Due to the ongoing work, we now have another glimpse inside former Second Avenue El bathroom, which hasn’t been used since the 1950s.

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The cleanup effort should last until around June 20, at which point, the city is poised to issue a Request for Proposals to convert the facility. Community Board 3 backed the plan in March, albeit with several recommendations:

  • That the food vendor be “accessible” to the community.
  • The addition of a bicycle servicing station.
  • Widening of the median concrete and landscaping to resemble the Mall south of Delancey (potential to affect the protected bike lanes).
  • Outdoor seating in warmer months on the northern exposure of the bathhouse.
  • Preference that the building remain preserved.
  • Assurance that the public bathroom on the south side is properly maintained by the vendor partners.

Millions in funding is necessary to see this to conclusion. As it stands, there’s currently $2 million in the bank earmarked for the renovation project, both from Parks and the now-defunct Lower Manhattan Development Corp. respectively. Plus, an additional $2.2 million (or thereabouts) is reportedly needed to complete the project, which would concurrently fix roughly two-thirds of the stretch between Delancey and Rivington. (The potential partner would be responsible for the building rehabilitation.)

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