The air conditioning in NYCHA community centers and cooling centers is on the move with possible heat waves

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HARLEM, Manhattan – The New York Housing Authority’s Johnson Community Center in Harlem is a refrigeration center, but it was very hot inside on Thursday.

Scan NY, a nonprofit group that supports high risk families in Harlem and the Bronx, is renting NYCHA’s space for children’s programs this summer. Program director Cynthia Chism says 151 children live there every day.

“We haven’t had air conditioning since July 1st,” said Chism. “We could now use 13 air conditioners.”

On Thursday morning the air conditioning finally came on again, but only in the gym.

It’s not just Harlem that has cooling issues, it’s all over town in NYCHA community centers. Viewers told us about AC issues during Monica Makes it Happen live Facebook show.

Senator Zellnor Myrie of Brooklyn said he had 23 NYCHA developments in his district. He says some are having problems right now.

“Our children and our seniors are trying to use cooling centers and they can’t and it’s not a new problem,” Myrie said.

A city hall spokesman told PIX11, “NYCHA has worked tirelessly to get these community centers out of the heat.”

NYCHA installed cooling systems in all community centers starting Thursday afternoon.

  • 117 are fully functional.
  • 19 centers are partially cool (public areas are cool, but not all offices may have a cooling system).
  • 12 sites need to be repaired, but NYCHA has installed a combination of portable units and small window units for the time being.
  • One of the centers is offline – under construction, so there is currently no programming available.

One thing to note: since these have just gone online, it will take some time for these buildings to get to the 78 degrees that Mayor Bill de Blasio said buildings need to be during a press conference on Wednesday (so if you are some may be above this temperature).

If you’re hot and need air conditioning in your community center, contact [email protected]

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