5Pointz Demolition Begins as Gaping Hole is Torn in Building
LONG ISLAND CITY — It's the beginning of the end for 5Pointz.
Demolition on the famed graffiti mecca began Friday morning, with contractors ripping a gaping hole in one of the low-rise buildings in the warehouse complex.
The building's owner David Wolkoff confirmed that demolition had started and would take three to four months to complete on the complex on Jackson Avenue and Davis St.
Developer G&M Realty is in the process of tearing down the building to make way for two luxury high-rise apartment buildings, which are expected to open in 2016 and will include 200 affordable units.
The demolition project will proceed from the back of the building and move forward towards Jackson Avenue, Wolkoff said.
Artists tried to block developers from demolishing the complex last year in hopes of buying the building and converting it into a permanent center for aerosol arts.
Russell Williams, a tourist from the United Arab Emirates who stopped to snap photos of the iconic structure being torn down, said he always stops at the site whenever he visits the city.
"To me, one of the things that said New York was this building," said Williams, 56. "How many places can you go and just see where street artists are allowed to do [what they do], and take their time. Sometimes you could come out and people would be painting and you could watch them."
Wolkoff said he plans to incorporate gallery space for artists and walls dedicated for street artists.
“We’re going to bring them back,” he said.