Monday, June 3, 2019

Here are the next meetings for you to learn more about stormproofing plans for East River Park

Now's your chance to hear more from various city agencies and officials about the plans to stormproof the East Side of Manhattan (aka the East Side Coastal Resiliency Project).

Here's a list of upcoming meetings...

Community Open Houses
• Wednesday, June 5, 4-8 p.m.


• Thursday, June 6, 2-8 p.m.

Peter Cooper Village, 360 First Ave., lower level (entrance on the east side at 21st Street).

ULURP Public Hearing – Parks, Recreation, Waterfront & Resiliency Committee
Tuesday, June 11, 6:30 p.m.
PS/MS 188 – The Island School, 442 E. Houston St. (entrance at Houston/Baruch Drive)

CB6 Full Board Meeting
Wednesday, June 12, 7 p.m., 433 First Ave. between 25th Street and 26th Street (NYU School of Dentistry), Room 210

As previously reported, to stormproof the East Side and protect residents from storms the magnitude of Sandy, the city plans to "lift" East River Park by up to 10 feet when work starts in March 2020.

Creating the intricate flood protection system would see the city close East River Park for up to three and a half years, shutting down the current amenities, cutting down many of the trees and rebuilding the newly renovated running track, among other things.

The draft environmental impact statement — 900-plus pages — for the East Side Coastal Resiliency project is currently available for review and comment. My previous post here has more details on the review process and links to relevant materials.

Last fall, the city unveiled an updated plan, which took residents, community leaders and local-elected officials by surprise after years of outreach and groundwork. The revamped plan — released without any community input — is radically different than what had been discussed, and its expected cost will increase from $760 million to $1.45 billion. City officials have said in various presentations that this approach will provide a reduced construction time, resulting in an operable flood protection system for the 2023 hurricane season.

Meanwhile, community coalition group East River Alliance has a petition in circulation calling for a change to the plans.


Anonymous said...

This entire plan + project is bullshit. Where are the funds coming from? Why can't the city use such money to repair and improve public housing? Or maybe address the homeless epidemic NYC is facing for once? Or, perhaps invest in the subway stations and place window gaurds on the platforms like they do on the Tube in London. I am sure 1.45 billion would cover that.

As I have said in the past on these comments, one should refer to the Netherlands, who are below sea level. Amsterdam has been in existence for centuries. They are NOT building such a silly barrier around their beloved town. And they recieve more flooding than we do, and yet they have other resolutions in place. No. This is the brainchild of our stupid, self-serving, and smug mayor, who rumor has it, wants to develop properties on this new elevated park. Call me arrogant but this is what I have been saying all along. This isn't for us or lower Manhattan. This is to line the pocket of DeBlassio, his cronies, and developers.

This makes me ill. I was there yesterday taking a run. Such a beautiful and calming stretch of land. And now there is a projected four years of construction?? This is a complete and utter waste of tax payer dollars. I wonder if grants will also be accelerating this expansion? Who the hell knows. I am fumed and regret the day I voted for this twit.

Signed by ,

A frustrated, embittered and powerless resident of the EV.

Anonymous said...

I'm in agreement with Anon 9:30am. Everything this mayor does is ultimately to benefit big real estate. The men who are in these meetings to answer questions about the model are architects, not engineers, and don't have answers to important questions such as how the interceptor works to link two water pipes to move excess floodwater away from the area, or the source of funding. They are also not always patient with answering questions beyond explaining their gorgeous and expensive model of the plan.

Anonymous said...

I completely agree with the last two commenters. I have been present for those public meetings. They offer no answers. This situation is due to a lack of leadership and mismanagment of funds. Sadly, we are living in an era of corruption. Some things never change. Thanks DeBlasio.

Giovanni said...

This makes me sick. In other words, the new plan is a done deal and these public hearings are just being held so the public can vent their frustrations before losing this park for four long years. Disgusting. Our only hope now is for Governor Cuomo to step in at the last minute like he did on the L train shutdown. I’m not holding my breath, just my nose.

cmarrtyy said...

This sounds like a done deal. The meetings are a dog 'n pony show. I have said we have the worst locally elected officials. They have no opinion except for the Dem party position - that means the mayor and his financial supporters. We recently lost the Boys' Club, the Tech center and the properties on Broadway to new development to the abuse of ONE PARTY RULE. And that is just the beginning. The East River Park is next. They use the guise of flood control as a threat to cow the opposition. But we know it's about MONEY. Westway was stopped by an environmental issue - the stripped bass. Maybe we can find the new millennial version of the bass to stop this nightmare and total waste of money. But remember when you vote that ONE PARTY RULE nullifies debate of issues and results in situations like the horrors of rezoning to the destruction of East River Park.

Anonymous said...

IMO, the best way to stormproof this area would be to take ALL the utterly useless politicians & their flunkies, and create a wall by stacking them all up on each other to create a barrier.

We have MORE THAN enough politicians to make a barrier that would protect us for years to come, and hey, if a few get washed away, there are plenty more where these ones came from.

noble neolani said...


I understand your point but do you think the Republicans who run for city office and only win with orthodox religious communities and Staten Island would be more about preservation, green, public housing and small business survival?

The once hero of the underdog Dems are just as bad (not all) as their opposition party when it comes to serving all New Yorkers and not just the wealthiest.

Even if people launched a Social Democrat party who would vote for it?

Last thing.... The mayors is not making this park flood proof, he in his own words making a "World Class Park" which I can only interrupt as a park for "world class people" and not those living in the area now.

Anonymous said...

With this project, you can already hear big real estate's re-branding of the Chinatown and financial areas along the river as "Two Bridges". One of the architects noted that he lives there but couldn't point to Canal Street in his diorama.

cmarrtyy said...


Today here are no independent, dynamic pols. They are basically the bland who lead the bland. In the city there is no debate on any issues - minor maybe - but overall no debate. What is wrong with that version of democracy? Plenty. We have to start somewhere. We have to vote for pols because of what they say and do and did for their community. WE CAN'T JUST PULL THE LEVER FOR THE DEM PARTY. This is all our fault. DON'T REWARD MACHINE POLITICS.

Remember Westway was stopped because it was led by pols and concerned coitizens. Today no pol has the guts to stand up to the party. So it's up to outraged citizens and that is very hard to do. And the Dems know that. So the Dog 'n Pony show and they get what they want.

We should all email/call our elected pols and tell them to stop the redevolpment of East River. Put some pressure on them to take a stand for the community. And when they don't, they will be exposed. And maybe.. just maybe they'll think twice about screwing with the community or else...

noble neolani said...

thanks for that post, I agree with you.

Anonymous said...

Our shitty mayor wants to turn East River Park into The Highline East with retail, vendors, and properties. This is not a resolve but a deceptive way to engineer a new park with a fresh vision. This is such a poor decision that will impact many from lower end incomes who live nearby in the projects for years to come. Again, Mr. Bill is thinking about himself. Maybe our governor will step in and intervene??? This is a major waste of money. If DeBlassio thinks he stands a chance on becoming the next president, he is as delusional and narcissistic as number 45.

Jill W. said...

I went into the open house skeptical, but I heard some details worth mentioning. The federal money that is paying for this apparently has a deadline attached. They are rushing to finish the project because the dollars will go away if not spent on time (on this specific use - so there was never a chance to have this kind of funding for other public works we might want). The original Plan A would take too long because of utility infrastructure underground (this tracks with a recent article in NY Mag analyzing our new subway projects vs London's). So the new plan accelerates the timeline.

They are working on the assumption that the park will continue to flood, and the trees will die anyway eventually from salt inundation, and the current recreational facilities will be damaged if not destroyed.

The most interesting part is that apparently (I would love to see this fact checked), there will be a certification that the protected area is no longer a flood zone. This is a huge game changer for insurance. This is meaningful to me personally because I'm vulnerable to flooding now. I have a moderate income, and flood insurance is cost-prohibitive.

Finally, 9:30AM, while there might not be a flood wall around Amsterdam, there is a giant one further south in the Netherlands. I visited it myself with an architect friend, for whom it was a technical wonder worth seeing in person. The biggest difference between there and here is that in Holland they put human life before all. Here, it's the almighty dollar.

Real estate will benefit, for sure. But so will all the existing residents whose homes were not in a flood zone before Hurricane Katrina in 2005.

kim ny said...

Thank you, Jill W.
I went to the meeting last fall, also skeptical and angry. I left convinced. I need to go tomorrow and see if anything changed.
It's regrettable that this work has to be done, but it's clear that steps must be taken - sooner rather than later. I think the most important thing now is to stay involved and pressure the city to keep this park for the neighborhood. We are going to be unhappy with some of it, no doubt.

cmarrtyy said...

"They are rushing to finish the project because the dollars will go away if not spent on time (on this specific use - so there was never a chance to have this kind of funding for other public works we might want). "

Jill, they are using a deadline to force the community to accept their plan. It's an old trick. The community should call their bluff. If they knew about the deadline they would have had alternative plans set up... not the one presented that's now a fait de complet. It's a con game and they are using these small meetings to squash all opposition. It's a real estate grab like all the other real estate grabs... that we will mostly forget about in the years to come. And sad to say re-elect the same political abusers to continue their abuse of the public. ONE PARTY RULE. ONE PARTY RULE.

Anonymous said...

It is a real shame they just finished a large renovation of the East River Park which must of cost a few million dollars and now to tear it all up for 3 to 4 years to build a storm protection barrier. Their must be a better way to do this without depriving lower east side citizens of one of the few nice parks we have and the only park which gives us access to the East River.

Anonymous said...

Our entire city government is laden with corruption and dishonesty. Our mayor also has dirty hands with this one. I smell a rotten egg here. Of course, this is about money and power. Two things that work in tandem with politics. It's sad. This park is gorgeous. Very sad and unfortunate.

XTC said...

Really can't compare Old Amsterdam (Holland) to New Amsterdam (NYC). The Dutch have been doing flood control for centuries plus they have many, many, many more dikes! And after getting rid of the old dikes the new dikes are stronger and better!

Mirek said...

I agree 100% with those against this new, and costly, plan. I have been down at the park many times and it is beautiful. Families from the LES come there over the weekend to play and barbecue, people come to walk or bike the promenade and take in the river sights and, when the season is right, the many flowers and foliage. A lot of money was spent on this park. But now? A new plan that will be costly and destructive. Surely, expensive coastal high-rises are in someone's vision. This stinks in a major way.