To the editor:
Re: Preserving the Rector Street Bridge
I would like to take this opportunity to report progress on saving the Rector Street Bridge to the Battery Park City Community.
Early in July, the majority of residents, workers and tourists crossing the Rector Street Bridge did not know that it was threatened with demolition. Realizing that they might lose their bridge, and few seeing the West Thames Bridge as a replacement, residents of the neighborhood rallied together to collect over 1,500 signatures to support the preservation of the Rector Street Bridge.
On August 9, Council Member Margaret Chin wrote a letter urging community engagement. “I write to join residents of Battery Park City to call on the New York City Economic Development Corporation, the Battery Park City Authority and Manhattan Community Board One to reconsider the demolition of the Rector Street Bridge. …
With the West Side Highway remaining one of the most heavily utilized thoroughfares in New York City, this bridge has dramatically reduced the safety risk for pedestrians-especially the seniors and children who cross it every day to go to school or their neighborhood community center. If New York City is to achieve its Vision Zero goals, then the Rector Street Pedestrian Bridge should be preserved and renovated, not demolished. …
While I understand, that the demolition of the Rector Street Pedestrian Bridge was part of the discussion around the construction of the West Thames Bridge, I urge you to delay the demolition and join my office in starting a community engagement process that weighs all options and alternatives.”
And now, the local community is engaged — people are taking action and choosing to make a difference.
If you want to keep crossing the Rector Street Bridge, you can make you voice heard by writing to the Economic Development Corporation (email@example.com
), the Battery Park City Authority (firstname.lastname@example.org
), Department of Transportation (email@example.com
) and Manhattan Community Board One (firstname.lastname@example.org
) — Or you can stand up and take the opportunity to speak out for 2 minutes during the public session of the next Community Board Meeting at 6pm at the Southbridge Towers Community Room, 90 Beekman Street on September 24th.
To the editor:
As a former member of Tom Goodkind’s CB1 Affordable Housing Committee, I’m so saddened that he didn’t live long enough to see 90 West and 50 Murray Streets win their cases for Rent Stabilization.
But as I read 125 Greenwich Street is about to enter bankruptcy, perhaps the City can reclaim it, turn the entire horrid needle monster into affordable units and name it for Tom.
One can dream! Tom sure did. R.I. P.
To the editor:
I totally agree with Jean Grillo and in fact, brought up 125 Greenwich to the Community Board in July.
I wished that some agency in NYC could take it over and create realistic housing. My thought was to accommodate minimum wage workers who serve our city, but can’t afford to live anywhere near their jobs. They are our nannies and home health aides; they serve in our retail stores and restaurants. We rely on them, but don’t notice that many spend three hours a day commuting.
And wouldn’t a change like this help integrate our schools at the same time – another goal this city struggles to meet?
As an alternative, WTC building #5 also might be used for this purpose.
We need more affordable housing downtown!
Maryanne P. Braverman
To the editor,
The July 30 article (BroadsheetDAILY July30 “A Shore Thing HRPT Plans Beach and Historic Sculpture for Gansevoort Peninsula”) about the proposed design for the park on the Gansevoort Peninsular included the following statement: “The beach will be more for viewing the water than public bathing, owing to concerns about hygiene and safety”. In fact, the beach will have no direct contact with the water. The Hudson River Park Trust calls it an “upland beach”, which is just a fancy name for a glorified sandpit.
The arguments provided for not having a true beach are dubious, given that is there is a very popular public beach almost directly over the Hudson River in Hoboken. Thus it is unlikely that the harbor water in Hoboken is clean, while the water flowing past the Gansevoort Peninsular is not. Nor is it likely that the residents of Lower Manhattan are less safe when active on beaches than those in Hoboken.
The kayak launch proposed for the south side of the Gansevoort Peninsular is a shallow ramp, which means that persons launching or landing a boat will almost invariably have direct physical contact with the water in the Hudson River. It is unlikely that kayakers are somehow less sensitive to polluted water than the general public.
When the design for the proposed Gansevoort Peninsular Park was presented to CB2 on July 24 it was said that a beach would be hard to build on the south side of the peninsular because, absent a cove, any sand would quickly get swept away by incoming waves. It was not possible to dig into the land to create a cove because the nearby Spectra gas pipeline (coming from New Jersey and crossing the peninsular) needed to be protected by a certain amount of land.
The gas pipeline could easily have been positioned twenty feet to the north when it was installed a decade ago, but this did not happen. It is unfortunately too late to change the location now.
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