Accomplishments

(Updated July 23rd, 2017)

Of the combined efforts of the NYC Parks Department, the Community, SDR Garden Organizations, Independent Sports organizations, Donators from near and far, Not-for-Profits, local Non-Governmental Organizations, NYC NYP’s 5th Precinct, SDR Coalition and others.

Completed or Ongoing CAPITAL IMPROVEMENTS::

  • Hester Street Playground (tiles made by local MS 131 students) led by Hester Street Collaborative
  • Resurfacing of the Grand Street Soccer Field (by Parks Dept workers!- quick, well-crafted completion)
  • Water Fountain installed in M’Finda Kalunga Garden – donated by Ohio based group.
  • Repair of the Stanton/Rivington soccer field.
  • Basketball court at Rivington repaired and repainted. Lovely work.
  • Stanton Building Bathrooms funded and designed and construction RFP out.
  • 5 Community stewarded gardens: Hua Mei Bird Sanctuary, M’Finda Kalunga Community Garden, ‘Betty’ Hubbard Memorial Garden, The Hort/Emma Lazarus Garden, The New Forsyth Conservancy.

 

Completed or Ongoing: QUALITY OF LIFE CONCERNS & ACCESSIBILITY, OUTREACH, AND PROGRAMMING

 

  • Re-instated the local Police Officer bike patrols throughout the SDR Park. Officers who know the Park are far more effective in preventing crime than “sweeps” or intermittent involvement.
  • Installation of 3 Citi Bike stands encourages practical sustainable practices.
  • BRC Building used as community meeting place for Community Board meetings, etc.
  • The Tenement Museum Staff’s ‘New’ Forsyth Conservancy’s reinvigorated GreenThumb space
  • “Betty” Hubbard Memorial Garden new stewardship with Rob Watson leading. MS 131, Pace HS.
  • The Hort/Emma Lazarus reinvigorating plots in the Park and training new generations of stewards.
  • Ladybug releases, turtle pond rebuilding, chicken farming, lightning bug releases etc.
  • All SDR Park signage in English/Chinese/Spanish (ongoing and underway).
  • NYCommons 3 open community and Coalition visionings in 2016 on the Stanton Building #StantonBldg (and other park concerns). University Settlement, Green Map, Common Cause NY, Urban Justice Center, & 596 Acres.
  • Voter Registration: M’Finda Kalunga Garden, The Chinese Progressive Association.
  • Advocacy against the granting of full liquor licenses that do not have an actual public benefit.
  • Advocacy against increased long-distance bus stands alongside the SDR Park.
  • One of Five Finalists in Design Trust for Public Space for the Stanton Building proposal in conjunction with Green Map System and University Settlement and SDR Coalition.
  • SDR President was a mentor in Partnerships for Parks Program.
  • SDR Coalition’s website is selected for inclusion in Columbia University Libraries Web Resources Collection Program Avery Library Historic Preservation and Urban Planning web archive to ensure its continuing availability to researchers. 2017 onward.
  • Full SDR Coalition Meeting October 2015 dinner and open break-out meetings and discussions on any issues confronting the park.
  • Monthly or bi-monthly attendance at NYC Park’s Department Operations Meetings with Manhattan Parks Commissioner Castro for SDR Park.
  • Follow-up to meetings with full report to email list to membership: 2012 to present.
  • Website communication of all things connected to SDR Park and/or that affect it’s community.
  • Accessible website comments for fast and transparent communication on SDR Park issues.
  • A neighborhood gathering place with nutritious meals for low-income seniors at the BRC Senior Center.
  • Juneteenth, Moon Festivals, Halloween, Sukkot, Cinco de Mayo, Narooz, Samhain, and other community festivals/celebrations to honor the various cultures of the neighborhood.
  • Neighborhood Family Groups meetings in BRC Senior Center, Garden.
  •  A CSA bringing nutritious organic food the lower east side distributed in the M’Finda Kalunga Community Garden.
  • Members Chinatown Working Group 2011 to 2015.
  • Occupy Wall Street compost recipient site.
  • Pilot recycling project in M’Finda Kalunga Garden.
  • NYCity Parks Department Urban Park Rangers invited for day long activities held for several years for the youth in M’Finda Kalunga Garden.
  • M’Finda Kalunga Community Garden is shared during the day by Domestic Violence shelters, Foster Care families, Day Care centers (with BRC Senior Center assistance).
  • Pet Adoption Days in the Garden.
  • New Museum Community Days in the Pit area.
  • “Spokes” meeting held in the M’Finda Kalunga Community Garden to encourage the use of bikes on the Lower East Side.
  • It’s My Parks Days (IMPD) with Partnerships for Parks: thousands of participants and press coverage (30 years of IMPDs)
  • Ensured that the Bowery Mission would be reinstated in their slot to use the ball field for their residents.
  • Continous efforts to abate rats.
  • Bike polo and young people sharing space in “The Pit”.
  • A Housing Roundtable for neighborhood developers and housing groups.
  • M’Finda Kalunga Garden is a safe haven for all seniors with senior identification.
  • The struggle to return to the community of one of our earliest and deepest partnerships: Rivington House staff and residents with University Settlement and SDR Coalition and Neighbors to Save Rivington House.
  • Active involvement with Park advocates and local representatives: Partnerships for Parks, New Yorkers for Parks, LUNGS, Park’s Department, Council Member Chin, Manhattan Borough President Brewer, State Senator Squadron, Assembly Member Niou, Community Board 3.