By Ellen Cans
A supermarket in Manhattan’s West Side is complaining that a luxury rental building is piling bags and bags of trash in front of its store.
As reported by the NY Post, Morton Williams, the grocery chain laments that hundreds of bags of garbage are piled up near the market’s entrance at West End Avenue and 60th Street three times a week. “It averages around waist-high with variances,” said Avi Kaner, the co-owner of the NYC supermarket chain. “In my decades as a business owner in New York City, I’ve never seen such reckless disregard for neighborly relations,” Kaner said, noting that it’s left out a full day before pickup. “People think it’s our garbage. It stinks and it’s unsightly.”
The garbage is said to come from the luxury tower at 21 West End Ave., a 48-story rental where 1-bedrooms ask $5,200 a month. The skyscraper offers posh resident’s amenities including a swimming pool, spa, golf simulator, wine-tasting room, and indoor dog park. “My client owns the street,” said Jay Itkowitz, an attorney for Dermot Co, the real estate firm that owns 21 West End. “It’s a private street and they can put the garbage wherever on the street they want, subject to DSNY approval. Obviously, my client has not put an application in [to DSNY] to put the waste material in front of their own building.” By law, being that the building has been designated as private property, tenant owners can choose where their garbage is picked up, so long as the Department of Sanitation of New York approves the location.
In response to the complaints, last week, Dermot Co. said it has contacted the NYDS requesting a new “designated” area for its garbage, said Itkowitz. The lawyer said that in the meantime, Dermot proposed a “compromise”, moving the trash away from Morton Williams’ front entrance and putting it on the corner by a second entrance to the supermarket. It has also agreed not to dump the garbage too early on the day before pickup, but rather after 4 pm. “Dermot has tried to accommodate the store to be a good neighbor,” Itkowitz added. “They would take the garbage away from the store’s main entrance. It may not be perfect, but they don’t have to do it.”
On Friday, NY Department of Sanitation spokeswoman, Belinda Magers commented saying she couldn’t immediately remark on the specifics. “If it’s a private street, that could lead to special conditions,” she said. “The private streets are not too common, especially in Manhattan, but they do exist, especially in the outer boroughs.”