Wednesday, October 2, 2019

Report: City now opts for phased-in approach for stormproofing East River Park

[Photo Sept. 21 by Stacie Joy]

The City will no longer shut down all of East River Park when stormproofing begins in March, opting now for a phased-in approach.

Here's what Gothamist has:

[T]he city has amended its plan to shut down all 45 acres of the park starting this spring, and instead will phase in the construction so only portions of the park are closed to the public at any given time. According to sources familiar with the new plan, the work is expected to be finished in 2025.

The de Blasio administration will announce their change in plans before they have to present them to a City Council land use hearing on Thursday morning, sources tell Gothamist.

We'll post more information as soon as it becomes available. [Updated: Here's the city press release.]

City officials previously planned to close East River Park for three-plus years, elevating it with 8- to 10-feet of soil from Montgomery Street to East 13th Street. Some residents, referring to it as the Kill Our Park Plan, had asked for the demolition and reconstruction of East River Park to take part in phases so that they continue to enjoy some of the amenities that the public space provides... others wanted the original plan that had been in the works for years before the city quietly changed its mind last fall.

Previously on EV Grieve:
• At the march and rally to save East River Park (Sept. 21)

• An annual reunion in East River Park (Aug. 4)

• A visit to East River Park (July 10)


bruce said...

Grieve, I'd suggest that while some residents do favor the newest plan, if it is done in stages, others (including me and East River Park Action) favor going back to the old plan, and making any necessary changes to it instead.

noble neolani said...

I think the not next President of the United States of America finally realized he would lose this battle. Let's see if he stands by his words.

MrNiceGuy said...

GREAT NEWS! Hopefully they'll also find a way to flow foot traffic around closed sections of the park so biking/running paths can remain open. The Good Guys win again!

Gojira said...

Better than nothing, but is it really necessary to simply chop the trees down? I'm sure experts could go through and find SOME of them that can be uprooted and saved, rather than the Parks Department engaging in wholesale and heartbreaking arboricide.

Dan said...

Come make your feelings heard tomorrow!
LAST CHANCE Final phase of review 4 #EastSideCoastalResiliencyProject
Thurs, Oct 3, 1-4pm at/with @NYCCouncil
hearing #NYCityHall. Independent review by
@deltares will hopefully be in hand.

Dave on 7th said...

Unfortunately, this was the easy compromise. The real victory would have been going back to the previously agreed upon plan that preserved most of the existing park.

Anonymous said...

That's still HORRIBLE. It's still destroying every mature tree in the land and every part of the environment. This cannot happen.

Anonymous said...

With potentially toxic landfill particles filling the air, it doesn't seem safe to live or go anywhere near any of the phased construction.

Choresh Wald said...

Carlina, Please vote NO on the plan!
We need to remove the FDR Drive . Let's get that smog producer out of our district and the buses will work so well that you can get to any of the Manhattan trunk lines so easily that it doesn't matter that the L train doesn't stop further east than 1st ave? remove the FDR and make it a tree lined boulevard and additional park land like when the embarcadero freeway came down in SF or the west street alongside the Hudson River.
There isn't enough room for everyone to drive their car. Cars are a convenience out in the burbs. They're a convenience in low density areas. Whereas in the most densely populated parts of the United States -- they cause the greatest detriment to quality of life on so many measures that it's unbelievable that even these, well, especially these politicians, seem to be enamored with the automobile -- like that trip to the apple orchard, or to VT to go skiing, can remotely justify their collective harm and political inaction. "Well, I might want to go on a weekend trip one day". We have 2 more years to endure a DeBlasio administration and all of the damage he is still yet to inflict on us.

Edmund Dunn said...

"Unfortunately, this was the easy compromise. The real victory would have been going back to the previously agreed upon plan that preserved most of the existing park."

Correct. And this:

"I support the phasing-in of this project, but I implore the Administration to hold off on the beginning of construction as the independent consultant’s report is imminent and should be considered,” Brewer said in a statement."

We will soon see who are the real progressive politicians here. Or are they are just REBNY/construction union stooges?

Rivera? Rivera?

bruce said...

I just called Carlina Rivera's office to urge her to vote No on this phased version of the bury the park plan. The person I spoke with indicated that she favors a phased version of any plan, and that they are still waiting for the independent review results.

Neighbors, as residents of the greatest neighborhood in the greatest city, we deserve a plan that protects the community and serves as a model for cities around the world battling the effects of climate change. We can keep the trees we have, and add more, we can expand the park and prioritize pedestrians and cyclists over cars, and we can minimize environmental hazards from the multi-year construction, and we can keep the park available in some form to all those who rely on it, especially those people in NYCHA housing next to the FDR, during whatever work needs to be done. We should improve the original plan, not move forward with the plan forced on the community by the city. Please call Carlina Rivera's office and make your voice heard: vote No on this plan, period. Phasing in a terrible plan doesn't make it any less terrible.

Anonymous said...

Why do they not have any respect for mature trees? This is not rocket science (well, maybe it is to de Blah-sio).

And I agree with @3:38pm about what this will do to the air quality of anyone nearby.

Why can't City Hall come up with something that's not half-baked? Oh, right, it's b/c they don't care.

Anonymous said...

Are they going to use Monsanto to kill the nearly 1000, 80 year old trees that are currently helping to clean our polluted air?

Which company is getting the wood from these mature trees?

cmarrtyy said...

This is just a distraction. A ruse. A yes... Dog 'n Pony Show. Oh, I'm a thoughtful Mayor. I listen to the people. But under his breathe... and in the backrooms... he knows he's getting away with it. He's killed the opposition. He's divided the opposition. IT'S BETTER THAN NOTHING... somebody said. This is not a solution. The whole plan is bad. Weather it's done as a whole or in part it's still the same bad plan. We have to show up at the meeting... let Death-of-the-City and Ruin-the EV Rivera know that they are not getting away with it. That some where out there is a better plan... Paging Dr. Gerhels... Dr. Gerhels... Paging Dr. Gerhels!

Anonymous said...

ERP is not just a park its also a passageway connecting a lot of neighborhoods. I doubt this plan will accommodate continued passage between lower MNH and LES, Stuytown, Waterside/Kips which based on my observation, seems to be a growing bike commuter route. Shame. The bike route from South Ferry to Stuy Cove is maybe the best in the whole city. Take the wide straight inland path if you want to pedal hard, or the waterfront and take in all the outstanding views.

Anonymous said...

Does anyone know details of the plan for a Dutch architectural firm to review both plans? Curious to know what instructions they were given, and eager to read the results.

Anonymous said...

"Save East River Park! Urge NYC to Develop a Resilient Plan with Consensus from Community!" Petition link

Anonymous said...

It is a partially good thing if they keep certain sections of the park open so that we can gain access to the East River....that park is really the only way many of us can get to the river unless you want to walk a distance down to South Street under the FDR Drive.

Anonymous said...

Grieve... Freudian?

“Details are ‘scare’ at the moment.”

Giovanni said...

This is a tacit admission that the current plan to destroy east River Park is probably one of the worst ideas proposed by any administration since “Master Builder” Robert Moses wanted to build a highway through Washington Square Park. Residents and NYU students would have been forced to use a footbridge to go from one part of the park to the other. Moses was going to name the highway Fifth Avenue South. Sound familiar?

Robert Moses was so insane that he also wanted raze all the buildings on 14 city clocks blocks in the heart of Greenwich Village under the guise of urban renewal. He also had a batshit crazy plan to build a 10 lane elevated superhighway called the Lower Manhattan Expressway, through SoHo, Little Italy, Chinatown and the Lower East Side. All of those plans were stopped when the communities they would destroy rose up oppose them. This plan to destroy East River Park should be stopped as well.

The current city planners make the false claim that the trees they say they need destroy will be killed eventually by the salt water from future flooding, but as anyone can see with their own eyes, the majority of trees survived the flooding from Sandy, as did most of the plants and wildlife. This plan will literally kill everything that is living there now. This plan must be stopped.

Anonymous said...

The loss of current trees is a bummer, sure, but in the long run it'd be nice to leave our kids a safer, better park. The trees will grow back.

I'm concerned this delay will cost more and prolong the pain. Better to rip off the band-aid and get it over with.

bruce said...

Well said Giovanni. I posted in Grieve's other post about the plan that East River Park Action has a list of things to do to try to make the city hear us, starting with today's (Thursday October 3rd) 1pm city council meeting.