The High Line Redux

Community activists know a thing or two. The High Line was all the rage despite community opposition, like Trump SoHo (which was supposed to be a condo-hotel) in Hudson Square, by the way. Here's an example of "I told you so" that draws lots of tourists for Chelsea, but does little for the residents. Perhaps, the City Council's recent enactment of tougher laws on landlord abuse will help our affordable housing crisis -- another issue that residents have been screaming about for years.


Below is a press release from 1000+ Friends: 


"The creator of the High Line admitted the design is no good for neighbors who have long griped about the constant parade of tourists marching just feet from their homes, a new report reveals. Designers cared more about the look of the elevated park than how it would effect the folks who live just feet from it, said co-founder Robert Hammond.  'Instead of asking what the design should look like, I wish we’d asked, ‘What can we do for you?’ Hammond told City Lab. 'Because people have bigger problems than design.'  He admitted the screw-up, saying he would do it differently if he could turn back time. 'We were from the community. We wanted to do it for the neighborhood. Ultimately, we failed,' he said.  The tourist attraction has drawn millions of visitors since it opened in 2009. But neighbors have complained about everything from loud crowds to obnoxious tourists snapping photos of their backyards, saying it destroys the neighborhood it cuts through.  Hammond is now the executive director of Friends of the High Line, which has launched programs to address some of the park’s shortcomings."
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"A group of 13 New York City-based civic organizations, including New Yorkers for Parks, sent an open letter to Mayor de Blasio outlining seven steps the city can take to ensure that we have the open space necessary for our gatherings and demonstrations to be safe and welcoming. 'Parks and public spaces are the soul of a city, where people come together to express their hopes, mobilize their communities, and engage in public dialogue,' said Lynn Kelly. Supporting the many roles open spaces play in healthy civic engagement is necessary to face the challenges and opportunities facing cities in the 21st century. NY4P is also tracking the locations of rallies, protests and demonstrations, and will soon have an online map showing where and how New Yorkers are using public space for free expression." 


What:   A Sunday Morning Bird Walk

When:  Tomorrow, February 19, 8:30 a.m.

Where: 20th Street/East River entrance to Stuyvesant Cove Park

Who:    The Stuveysant Cove Park Association & host Ann Lazarus


Carol Rinzler     Carol Schachter     Carol Greitzer
Gary Papush    JoAnne Simon (emeritus)  Louise Dankberg
Patricia Dolan (1939-2011)



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