Community Board 4 made an exception to its long-standing policy against honorary supplemental street names and unanimously passed a resolution on Aug. 11 in favor of bestowing the name of Jane Wood, a Chelsea housing activist who died in March, on W. 19th St. between Seventh and Eighth Aves.
Wood, who lived on the block for 50 years, was a founder of Chelsea Coalition on Housing and became a legend in her own lifetime for fighting against tenant evictions and for decent housing conditions. More than 100 Chelsea residents sent postcards to the community board calling for the supplemental street name and many of them testified at the Aug. 11 board meeting.
Supplemental street names are under the jurisdiction of the City Council and community boards have no official role in the process. Nevertheless, the board endorsed a letter to the Department of Transportation recommending the name and forwarded the request to City Councilmember Christine Quinn for submission to the Council.
Elected officials including Quinn, State Senator Tom Duane and Assemblymember Richard Gottfried have all acknowledged Wood as their model for housing activism and support the honorary name.
The Council is expected to approve the Jane Wood designation for the W. 19th St. block at its official September meeting.