Monday, March 27, 2006

Preserve Randall's Island - NYC resident interest mostly

OK. I'm sad to see the end of Pier 64 - but in the end it was very old & dilapidated & there are people in Chelsea who really want a WATERFRONT park and so I will keep my level of comments to taking mournful pictures of the demolition process. But my friend Harry (he's got some fun pictures from our Edgewater paddle) left the following as a comment about taking some public parkland & putting up a theme park & this seemed worth bringing up from there & making a post. Haven't had a chance to look into this myself but just on a quick read I don't like the way it sounds (people USE the Ward's & Randall's Island parks - I've taken a lot of lunch breaks there and on a nice day in the summer there are always people out there having fun).

please share widely for paddlers...
Preserve Randall’s Island

Please sign onto the platform to Preserve Randall's Island!

A proposed theme park would occupy 26 acres of our waterfront.

Why we oppose this proposal:

Transparency: Originally proposed in 1999 as 12-acres, this theme park project has metastasized into a $168 million, 26-acre enterprise with a 35-year lease, without a Request for Proposals

Alienation: Would require 10 of the island’s already overcrowded baseball and soccer fields to be bulldozed.

Access: Price of admission to this private enterprise will be more than $60.

Scandal: Financial backers have contributed more than $100,000 to various political committees, in addition to entities controlled by former elected official

Ignores waterfront: The project would be inaccessible to residents of nearby neighborhoods that are underserved by parks, such as East Harlem & the South Bronx, which has no official waterfront or shore access.

Environment: Water theme sites are horrible for the environment, discharge millions of gallons of chlorinated water, and a 130,000 sq ft indoor facility with entrance fee is inappropriate for our ball fields and shore line

Next steps:

Sign on your organization to this platform...

Governance: The project must win five votes from the city’s Franchise and Concessions Review Committee (FCRC), which consists of mayoral appointees, the Comptroller’s office and the affected borough president, in this case Manhattan’s Scott Stringer, whose opposition to the plan is on record.

EMAIL ACTION: Comptroller Thompson and Council Member Viverito and The Mayor:,
Dear Elected Officials,
I am aware of the proposal to privatize 26 acres of Randall's Island to a commercial enterprise with a horrendous track record and connections to the former Mayor. Please stop the Randall's Island Theme Park. Instead, the government could build the bridge from South Bronx and open the bridge to East Harlem.
The waterfront is the wrong place for this kind of non-park use. I look forward to your written response.

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