Staten Island seems to have the kind of problems with development that the rest of the city had years ago. We mentioned in passing the troubled state of the Lighthouse Museum, which the Staten Island Advance and others consider a frustrating boondoggle. Recently the paper covered the magnificent but decrepit old Staten Island Hospital, which has sat abandoned for 20 years and become “an eyesore, a spot for vandalism and a chronic ‘burden to the community.'” Today the Advance updates on the Gerard Carter Community Center in Stapleton, a protracted, 10-year project. Though that seems a bit long for the erection of a community center — new city councilman Kenneth Mitchell says it took NASA less time to get to the moon than it has taken to build this thing — the project is alleged to be near completion, but two contractors defaulted earlier in the year, so now the city fathers are asking the NYCHA for some of that green, green stimulus money the Feds have sent them to pick it back up.
Between this and the alarming commercial and residential real estate reversals Staten Island has suffered lately, we wonder whether people will begin to think of the borough the way they used to think of The Bronx: as a frightening, dystopic outland and harbinger of the city’s future.