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:
“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.