DOB Orders Mosque Construction Workers To Leave Site

Source: Bay People

The Department of Buildings has confirmed that inspectors visited the site of the Islamic Cultural Center (2812 Voorhies Avenue) today, and ordered all workers to cease construction immediately for violations of their partial Stop Work Order.

Upon inspection, the department found excavation work being performed that violated an existing Stop Work Order on the elevator pit. As a result, the agency is in the process of issuing violations for non-compliant conditions.

The partial Stop Work Order has been in effect since January 14 after rescinding a full Stop Work Order in place since January 6. The SWO’s were a result of complaints from opponents to the construction of the Islamic Cultural Center.

This morning’s inspection likely came at the urging of Bay People, who had an ongoing e-mail exchange yesterday with Ken Lazar, community liaison for the Department of Buildings, complaining that excavation continued in violation of the Stop Work Order. The e-mail included photos (one is above) and video.

Here is the text of the e-mail:

Dear Mr. Lazar,
Please note that your response to our email is viewed by Bay People for what it is: an attempt by the Department of Buildings to cover up its gross negligence.
Excavation resumed at 2812 Voorhies as soon as the Complete Stop Work Order was amended to “Partial” and your office and DOB was aware of it from our numerous 311 compalints. You are also aware that NO excavation could have been witnessed today due to the fact that they COMPLETED excavating ILLEGALY despite the Stop Work order and the equipment is no longer there.The fact that the inspectors  were at the site and observed no violations does not show that the violations were not occurring. The builders know about complaints posted on line and wait for the inspectors to show up before they continue work. The pit didn’t magically appear weeks into the stop work order, it was methodically dug up! (VIDEOS ATTACHED)
The easiest way to show the violation of the Stop Work order would be for the same unit which issued the order to see the changes at the site since the SWO was issued. Do they remember what it looked like a month ago? Are there  pictures? There are, we and other neighbors sent it to DOB on numerous occasions and would be happy to-resend the e-mails. You are asking for evidence….Well we are sending in to you with before and after pictures and videos of exacavation that violates the partial stop work order (videos taken 1/20/2011.)
Photo 01-25 11-151 shows excavation at the elevator pit.
Photo 01-26-11-152 shows that excavation was completed
Our complaints are not “accusation” but legitimate concerns expressed by residents of the community. We have witnesses, pictures and videos confirming continous excavation at the site. Moreover, DOB received a video of the excavation on 1/20/2011 (sent by Brian Reid.) Why didn’t you mention it in your response? Who are you covering for? Why are you lying to every person copied on this email? Being a “liaison”, did you contact the people who observed the violations, did you visit the site before and after?
2812 Voorhies has multiple complaints, open violations and unpaid fines. The paperwork is still not in order. Multiple documents are not signed or dated, some documents have wrong names and addresses. And we are not even talking about mistakes/falsification and omissions in the plans, just the obvious things that can be observed without being an architect or an engineer.
Unfortunately, residents of Sheepshead Bay have no choice but do the work the DOB has failed to perform.
Please contact us shoud you have any questions:info@baypeople.org or 646-673-6297
Alex Tenenbaum
Leonid Krupnik, PE

Here is the video:

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