Home values along pipeline ok for now

As politicians and residents call for more Homeland Security funding for the Howard Beach area, many who live and work there do not feel that the fallout from the thwarted terror plot targeting the Buckeye Pipeline will affect home values or quality of life in the near future.
Community Board 10 Chair Betty Braton told The Courier Sun, “[The neighborhood] is relatively safe. There are far too many safeguards in place. Periodically, we get reminders of terrorism, but there are far too many benefits of living in this community.”
Likening the terror plans to the airplane noise that “does not stop people from moving to the community and paying significant amounts to do so,” Braton continued, “in the short term, some homeowners may put their houses up for sale, but in the long term, there will be little effect.”
Four individuals including Russell Defreitas, a U.S. citizen from Guyana who previously worked for a cargo company at JFK; Abdul Kadir, a citizen of Guyana who has served as a member of the Guyanese Parliament; Kareem Ibrahim, a citizen of Trinidad and Abdel Nur, also a citizen of Guyana, have been charged with attempting to blow up fuel tanks and the Buckeye Pipeline in early June.
The pipeline crosses from Lindenwood southeast to 157th Avenue, over Cross Bay Boulevard, to the other side of Howard Beach, and ends at JFK Airport, according to Councilmember Joseph Addabbo.
Along this span are two senior centers, P.S. 232, St. Helen School, the Rockwood Park Jewish Center, P.S. 207, Our Lady of Grace School, P.S. 146 and a day care center.
Addabbo, who represents the area, echoed Braton’s sentiments, saying that the Howard Beach neighborhood was far too family-oriented and attractive not to draw potential buyers.
However, residents, many of whom were unaware of the pipeline until media reports, have expressed concerns.
“I was very frightened and very upset when I heard about it,” said Bisciello, who has lived in Howard Beach for the past 30 years. “It’s very scary and makes you feel very suspicious of everyone.”
Lajja P. Marfatia, broker/owner of Connexion I Real Estate Services Inc. in Howard Beach, said that the terror scheme “would deter people from living in the area.”
“I feel that if the media continues to focus [on this], it will affect the market in the long term,” she continued.
Her partner, Arlene Pacchiano, who has lived in the neighborhood for 31 years, told The Courier Sun that before the terror plot was unraveled, she never even noticed the pipeline.
Braton, who joined in the call for more security, said, “The community leaders are in agreement. Although we believe that New York City is doing a great deal to protect against terrorism, our areas - because of their proximity to the airport - are not being given enough support for critical infrastructure. We are being shortchanged.”

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