5Pointz Demolition Slated for August, Owner Says
LONG ISLAND CITY — The owner of the warehouse that once housed graffiti mecca 5Pointz says he's hoping to start tearing down the property as soon as next month.
Though demolition permits have yet to be issued at the project site — which is bound by Davis Street, Jackson Avenue and Crane Street — owner Jerry Wolkoff of G&M Realty said he's looking to start razing the buildings around mid-August to make way for construction of two residential towers.
"It cannot be soon enough for me," said Wolkoff, who is planning to build two high-rise luxury apartment towers at the site, containing around 1,000 apartments. "People are going to be amazed when it opens up."
Check out DNAinfo's coverage of 5Pointz:
–Graffiti Mecca 5Pointz Whitewashed Overnight
–5Pointz Artists Fighting Demolition With Lawsuit
–City Council Approves Plan to Build Luxury High-Rises at 5Pointz
–Proposed 5Pointz Redevelopment to Include Space for Street Art
The developer filed an application for full demolition back in March, according to Department of Buildings records. The records also show the main address associated with Wolkoff's project, 22-44 Jackson Ave., has several open violations dating back several years.
"Whatever violations are there, we'll straighten out," Wolkoff said.
G&M Realty's plan for the site, which were approved for a special permit by the city last year, is to construct two residential apartment towers measuring 41 and 47 stories tall.
The project was met with opposition from those who wanted to maintain the space, which street artists had used as a canvas for nearly two decades and had been an attraction for tourists and other visitors. 5Pointz artists tried to block the demolition of the building with a lawsuit last fall.
5Pointz fans were outraged in November when Wolkoff decided to suddenly paint over much of the artwork at the site overnight, a move he maintains was to lessen the blow of the art being destroyed slowly over the course of demolition.
"That's a three, four month process," he said. "To watch that over the months is torturous."
His plans for the future development include designated space for artists' studios and galleries, as well as walls that will be set aside for street artists to paint on.
"I'm going to bring the artists back," he said. "They'll have walls, they'll have a place for years and years to express themselves."