Like so many other neighborhoods and areas of the city, the Glen Oaks Village cooperative in Queens has seen its share of good times and not-so-good times. But from the bleak days of the 1970s and ‘80s, thanks to a conversion, a committed, self-managing board, and involved shareholders, the picture at Glen Oaks Village today is very different from what it was a couple of decades ago.
New Board, New Start
Located in northeastern Queens, Glen Oaks Village was built during World War II, originally as rental housing for GIs returning from combat in Europe and the Pacific. It converted to co-op in 1981, but during the 1970s and ‘80s the community experienced a downturn in value and appeal. The property wasn’t well maintained, and the area became known as a place for transients.
The outlook began to improve, however when the current board finally took over the self-managed property and began serious efforts to turn the community around.
“The strength of a cooperative is to have long-term residency, so the current board has worked very hard over the last 10 to 15 years, completely reorienting and changing Glen Oaks,” says Bob Friedrich, current president of Glen Oaks Village Owners Inc. (GOVO).
The board has done such an impressive job with this economic and tenant makeover that according to Friedrich, “we are financially sound and have a reserve account in excess of $12 million. Now we are a community where people stay for a long period of time.”