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Mayor targets 10 most rat-infested NYCHA developments for extermination efforts

Mayor Bill de Blasio announced extermination efforts that will take place at 10 NYCHA developments that see a heavy rodent presence.
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Ten NYCHA developments with a rat problem are getting new extermination plans from the city. Photo: Getty Images

Mayor Bill de Blasio on Tuesday launched an “aggressive” extermination plan targeting the ten most rat-infested public housing developments.

Ten New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) developments, where about 23,000 people live, will receive dry-ice treatments, full-time exterminators, trash bins and new concrete floors, the city announced.

“We want to make the greatest city on earth the worst place in the world to be a rat,” de Blasio said in a statement. “We are launching an all-out offensive to dramatically reduce the rat population at these developments and improve the quality of life for residents.”

The extermination approach will target the rats’ food sources and borrows, officials said, in ways that have been shown to be effective at reducing both rat reproduction and populations.

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The new trash bins will be compatible with the dimensions of NYCHA trash chutes, the city said, to reduce the about of refuse collecting anywhere else on development grounds.

The new concrete floors will help to seal off dirt basements to better keep rats from entering the buildings.

“For too long, residents have had to accept rats as a regular presence,” said NYCHA General Manager Vito Mustaciuolo in a statement, “but through the mayor’s Rat Reduction Program, we have the resources and support to reduce infestations.”

This effort in public housing is part of de Blasio’s $32 million rat reduction initiative, which aims to reduce the rat population by 70 percent in the most infested neighborhoods, including the Grand Concourse area, Chinatown/East Village/Lower East Side and Bushwick/Bedford-Stuyvesant.

The 10 NYCHA developments targeted for rat reduction are Bushwick, Webster, Marcy, Butler, Morris I, Morris II, Riis I, Riis II, Morrisania and Hylan.