Work in the “de Britta” Garden, Appreciating Parks Gardener/Manager/Forestry and The Pit hosts a sword practice!

Bulbs are in, mulch is underway, stones are in the process of delineating the borders of the plot areas. In spring, or if we can, on warmer winter days, we will continue to mulch and create borders.

Thanks to Sandy Pliego for the mulching!

 

And thanks to Michael (Parks Gardener) and Jamil (Park Manager) and Parks Forestry Department for the effort to clear sight-lines and prune large bushes and trees.

 

And it was a good day for sword play in The Pit

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Making New York Work for Everyone

“the document proposes a list of 40 steps to build a “model of shared prosperity that is both pro-growth and anti-racist.”

Cities Are for People Who Want to Be There

Now they need to act like it.

BY HENRY GRABAR

“as a new report commissioned by the mayor and Gov. Kathy Hochul makes clear, the powers that be are ready to face reality: “Hybrid work is here to stay,” it announces.”

“…masterminded by a pair of deputy mayors from the Bloomberg and de Blasio administrations, Dan Doctoroff and Richard Buery, is the most ambitious document to address the urban crisis brought on by the pandemic. It’s an island of hope in a sea of dim prognoses for urban life. The gist is that if people are no longer compelled to be here to have access to powerful and remunerative jobs, we have to make them want to be in the city for some other reason.”

Dolores Hayden first proposed the idea of a “non-sexist city” in 1980, and Swedish cities have begun to center women’s urban experience in the planning process, redesigning spaces and changing bus schedules. The safety and interests of children helped shape Amsterdam’s safe streets movement in the 1970s and have become influential causes for American activists today. Curb cuts, initially designed for wheelchairs, soon made the urban environment accessible to a whole host of users, including parents with strollers and kids on bicycles and older people with shopping carts.

Flexible housing arrangements and relaxed licensing requirements make it easier for immigrants to set up shop. Better policing focused on solving crimes and building trust will keep Black families in the city—and it’s their flightfor the most part, that is behind worrisome population declines in places like New York and Chicago. The stability of a city’s neighborhoods, tax base, and school system depends on the continued favor of regular families, and a successful post-COVID politics will put their interests first. And if they stay in the city, they might even go to the office from time to time, giving corporate tenants a reason to stay put.

New York with other cities that are trying to adjust their economic model to account for changing times, it’s that a city can no longer put business leaders first. Instead, implementing a quality-of-life renaissance in cities will require first considering long-neglected groups whose wants and needs are suddenly vital to the city’s future: women, children, the elderly; immigrants, residents of color, the working class. Make the city work for them and it will work for everyone.

“a host of U.S. urban policies suggest many elected officials still have not gotten the message.

Why aren’t strollers allowed on all New York City buses?

Why do transit schedules and routes prioritize rush-hour downtown commuters?

Why do schools start before sunrise?

Why do city streets remain so dangerous for children?

Why are benches for older people so few and far between?

Why does zoning forbid small units to accommodate households that don’t resemble typical nuclear families?

“What does a quality-of-life project look like if it’s not about searching Black teenagers and arresting churro vendors in the subway? On the public safety front, the report correctly grasps that lowering crime rates requires repopulating the streets, decreasing the city’s unemployment rate, and encouraging workforce development programs—thought it also nods to increased police presence on the subway and the controversial effort to forcibly hospitalize homeless people with serious mental illnesses. This all-of-the-above philosophy categorizes many of the report’s suggestions, such as the idea that pols should “develop a sustainably operating budget model for the MTA while increasing subway service.” 

“..Other…daunting goals include affordable childcare, a new subway line, and an accessible mass transit system.”

read the article here.

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Park Walk With Manhattan Commissioner Perez and Council Member Chris Marte

This fall we walked through of Sara Roosevelt with NYC Manhattan Parks Commissioner Anthony Perez and Council Member Chris Mart, Parks Deputy Chief of Operations Ralph Musolino, Park Manager Jamil Phillips, and Storehouse Manager Dennard Harris to gather information and survey problems and what is working.

Resulting in immediate solutions for the park:

Brighter lighting in the park (see previous posting), CM Marte brought up issues around Canal area and the need for better lighting and work to deal with encampments. The removal of derelict and ineffective (sometimes dangerous) fencing around the sprinkler at Stanton and bench areas there, and the Hua Mei Bird area. The neighborhood’s request to return the benches at the front of the Pit – done! (Jamil installed the benches the next day!).

We walked the entire park. There was strategizing on increasing the public’s use of the Pit, recreating the Hua Mei bird fencing and the possibility of using pieces of fencing elsewhere in the park. (and the Coalition mentioned the possibility of a shared site at the Broome Parkhouse).

The police have requested to fence off an area south of Delancey – the dramatic lighting installed there has already made the area safer.

AND both Park Commissioner Perez and CM Marte let us know that the Stanton building will be released to public use: a new site and funding are found!! A structured timeline is being created!

The Commissioner also  promised to reinstitute Park Operations meetings for this park and he and CM Marte are committed to taking action about violence here.

Thanks to both Commissioner Perez and CM Marte for their support and partnership in re-centering our park to be for this community and the larger public!

 

 

 

 

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Broome Street Lit Up

Our new Manhattan Park Commissioner Anthony Perez and 5th Pct with Det. Vincent Cheung worked quickly to install brighter lighting along Broome Street and BRC Delancey. It made an immediate difference.

Thank you.

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Forsyth Satellite Academy I Pratt Institute I The Level Up Project Celebration

Great to be at one of our local high schools:

 

Council Member Marte and Pratt Professor Keena Suh and Pratt students

 

Forsyth Satellite Academy (FSA) celebrated their collaboration with The Level Up Project (TLUP) and with Pratt Institute School of Design, led by Keena Suh (Pratt and Keena are members of our local Stanton Task Force!)

And…

Today were joined by Council Member Chris Marte!!!

Principal Samantha Pritchard (standing far right) and Council Member Marte (standing middle) had a chance to talk briefly about needs for this incredible school and a quick walk-through (more to come apparently). Art teacher Paula Walters Parker (kneeling right). Toni McNeil Program Dit CAMBA (to CM Marte’s left) and Deanna Bowman Assist principal of FSA (to CM Marte’s right).

A great day with terrific students and beautiful ideas and artwork!

In the fall 2022, Interior Design students from Pratt Institute collaborated with FSA students to reimagine their high school library, sharing their talents, passions, and inspirations in a series of hands-on workshops.

Thank you to all including CM Marte staff Connor.

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December 18th 2022 Update of proposals for Delancey South and Grand North

The Chinatown Revitalization Initiative presented many safety-providing, positive, interesting  proposals. We thank Governor Hochul for this funding.

This is a link to all the projects proposed

Specifically, on the proposal for Sara Roosevelt Park Hester to South Delancey:

We’ve listened to nearby residents, local organizations, gardeners, businesses, and sports users, we’ve sent out updates, used social media, and conducted one in-park tabling for ideas and to create awareness (not nearly enough).

Our proposals, as always, draft pending true community engagement.  “In-Park” outreach with no ties to gentrification histories needed.

For safety, for beauty, for public park uses, for maintaining our unique strengths and our diversity, while upgrading for even more positive use, for encouraging the neighborhood and public to see Parks as their backyards, get-away vacation spots, their air-conditioning, for for uses aligned with the needs of our neighborhoods, that do not encourage further displacement of the low-income communities of color here via gentrification:

  • After a number of consultations with birders over the years: New wrought iron fence around the bird sanctuary 5-7’ tall -north end for safety, 4’ for south section with gate so there are two means of egress in an emergency. Consult birders for any changes.
  • Grand St. entryway. Remove brick walls along Grand Str for maximum visibility from the street.
  • South Delancey entryway Remove broken steps, create two wide accessible pathways.
  • Retain community stewarded garden plots.
  • Pipe a water source – for Bruckner box and water fountain.
  • Remove low brick walls that front the two side plots – misused. Restore decorative gates.
  • Attach two metal tables in the open walk-way areas. Visible from street to provide seating that doesn’t encourage harmful or unsanitary acts.
  • Repair asphalt from Delancey to Grand, or as much as funding allows, for accessibility.
  • New, brighter lighting, downward facing in the area.
  • Less vital: Fix the benches along the Pit.
  • Do in sections so most of the park can remain open.
  • Fix drainage in Pit in southern end.
  • Share the Broome Parkhouse with a local community organization or return it for full community activation.
  • We are currently seeking information from those who would be most impacted but we do not have enough information on what the people of  Forsyth Hester to Grand section want/need. Such as, how would it affect their parking needs? Small businesses, the local schools, Parks Dept, and residents need to weigh in on this part of the proposal.
  • We assume Parks Department will address and heed all of this.

 

We have a synthetic turf field in this section and are oversaturated with synthetic turf fields (used primarily by outside groups). Issues with carcinogenic materials.

More problematically, no one we spoke to, who lives (or plays) or has businesses here (for decades) had heard of this or, if they had, did not think it affected them.

In this area of SRP ‘The Pit’ is one of the only active, versatile, and well used space (by the community): The Burmese Water Festival, the New Museum, elected officials, ROAR, badminton, Tai Chi, Bike Polo, Soccer (the soccer ‘pitch’ recently painted as an East River Park mitigation), etc. As such, The Pit use makes the area safer, as does the gardening by SRPCC volunteers and the 5th Pct’s Youth Explorers. City Relief also provides a safety on south Delancey on Thursdays.

Revised December 18th 2022

(former draft proposals are kept on the website – we get smarter and more informed as we ask our neighbors).

 

A little history:

NYTimes: Gathering Neighbors’ Dreams for a Shabby Playground 

“This is about community preservation in a neighborhood facing displacement,” said Anne Frederick, executive director of the Hester Street Collaborative, a nonprofit group that works on designs for public spaces, and one of the lead organizers in yesterday’s event. She said the goal was “for people to think about the park in relation to the larger community as well.” ED of Hester Street Collaborative and President of the SRPCC at that time.

 

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