The Iron Triangle (2017) at DOC NYC 2017

November 15th, 2017 by Mr. C


The struggle is real at the Willets Point section in the borough of Queens NYC, an industrial area that has been occupied by auto mechanic shops, junkyards, chop shops, & machinery businesses for decades. The time has come for the City to start evicting these businesses for new real estate development under the shadows of Citifield ballpark & NY Mets ownership. The Iron Triangle documentary takes us on a rough ride of this gritty neighborhood & its inhabitants and what they will have to endure to survive. It’s really a heartbreaking story about blue collar workers hustling for their dollars vs billionaire development companies hustling for even larger dollars. Which side do you think the City of NYC will stand by? We all know cash rules everything around us but you would think humanity and compromise would win out but I’m not so sure these days. In 2008, Mayor Bloomberg cut a deal with the City & the NY Mets ownership to start this project of redeveloping Willets Point, and the time has come to pay the greedy piper. Some owners/workers from Willets Point are looking for detailed specifications with help on relocating their businesses as a community while some owners/workers are looking to stay and have the city redevelop the property for the existing businesses. An even bigger majority of the community is more concerned about the plans for new development of the biggest mall in NYC instead of concentrating on creating more affordable housing in the area. The NYC Economic Development Corp, of course is trying to make the process a one sided affair in favor of the developers and less about compromising or helping the current Willets Point shop owners with sustaining their livelihoods in another cooperative. What will the final verdict be for this project? What is the current status of Willets Point?

There are many layers of deceit here like the overall neglect of the property by the City of NY at Willets Point meanwhile tax dollars are being collected from these business owners. Roads are left unpaved, sidewalks are non existent, area is prone to flooding, and toxic waste is left unmanaged. The commmunity of Willets Point had also mentioned that NYPD rarely responds to calls here. It was as if the City of NYC had already flagged this area as a wasteland many many decades ago and was just waiting until the grim reaper to be called on. Will the council vote yes or no for the Willets Point development? If yes, will the wishes of the auto shop owners and the community be met? Either way, The Iron Triangle aka the Valley of the Ashes aka Willets Point is a microcosm of the society that we live in today from NYC to Timbuktu. Gentrification and urban renewal is the name of the game but is it necessarily the best thing for the community? It seems like we are always pushing a lower income bracket out and replacing with a larger one to eradicate the smaller fish. WE as immigrants of this nation and I mean WE from all colors, creeds, & ethnic backgrounds came to the United States for a better tomorrow. Sometimes a better tomorrow doesn’t come until years later, sometimes decades, maybe even longer?…maybe it will never come but we keep on fighting for our rights & equality for a possibility of this better tomorrow.

We recommend THE IRON TRIANGLE with a solid iron fist in the air!

Catch THE IRON TRIANGLE at DOC NYC on THU. NOV. 16, 12:30PM (IFC Center, 323 6th Ave. NY,NY)

I would like to add that watching Foreign Parts (2010), another documentary focused on the heartbeat & day in the life of this Willets Point neighborhood will give you a good understanding on the lives and community that are at stake here. The Iron Triangle documentary will fill in the cracks, iron out all the creases, and give you a better grasp of the stipulations involved between the fight with the auto-shop owners, employees, & their families vs the City of NY and the land developers.

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Posted in art, community, movies, mr. c, theatre | Comments (0)



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