Hundreds Protest Councilwoman Margaret Chin’s Refusal to Save the Elizabeth Street Garden

Posted on: December 8th, 2016 at 5:12 am by

elizabeth-garden-1

Yesterday, hundreds of residents from Little Italy, SoHo, Nolita and surrounding neighborhoods protested in front of the City Council offices on Broadway, to vocalize their frustration over major real estate development decisions getting greenlit through Margaret Chin and the de Blasio administration.

Of the many concerns included the lack of support on Council Member Chin’s part to save the Elizabeth Street Garden, located in an area argued to be starved for open space. The Friends of the Elizabeth Street Garden nonprofit maintains that the 20,000 square foot park offers more than 200 free public events year-round, and attracts more than 100,000 visitors every year.

Subsequently, a $100,000 fund to support a long term “Wake-Up Campaign,” directed at educating government officials and all those seeking to replace Elizabeth Street Garden with real estate, is now in full swing. It’s already halfway to its fundraising goal, and said funds will go towards “social media, free media, direct mail, protests, a 7,500 person mailing list and other forms of community outreach” to bring information to light for all those who are affected by what is to become of the beloved park space.

“Council Member Chin and the deBlasio administration are single-mindedly focused on developing the Garden, while ignoring other nearby opportunities,” said Emily Hellstrom, longtime neighborhood resident and Garden volunteer. “Meanwhile, they have been asleep on several other major recent real estate decisions that would have allowed the creation of significantly more affordable housing on publicly owned land.”

Council Member Chin included the Elizabeth Street Garden as part of the CB3’s Essex Crossing development. It’s worth noting that since this inclusion transpired, CB2 has held four public hearings on the matter, during which the overwhelming sentiment has been to save the Garden and to visit an alternative affordable housing site (388 Hudson Street), where five times as much senior housing could potentially be built.

Photo: Elizabeth Street Garden

Photo: Elizabeth Street Garden

 

Recent Stories

Linkin Park’s Chester Bennington Gets a Tribute on Ludlow Street

Late Linkin Park leadman is now memorialized on the Lower East Side. Barely one month after Chester Bennington committed suicide at 41, an unknown fan stuck his image onto the facade of 159 Ludlow Street (aka 101 Stanton). The distinctive photo is itself framed by a television set and stands apart from the collage of […]

’80s Concept Bar ‘GB85’ on Rivington Street is for Sale

The 1980s-themed bar GB85 on Rivington Street is not long for the neighborhood. As next of kin for Stay Classy New York, the small concept spot is now listed for sale. Tower Brokerage was retained to represent the seller. According to the real estate listing making the rounds, the 1,300 square-foot (plus basement) space is […]

‘Factory Tamal’ Reopens in New Ludlow Street Location

Factory Tamal is now up and running in its new Lower East Side location. The tiny dispensary relocated yesterday around the corner to 34 Ludlow Street. The move comes at an unusual time, as the business just debuted five months ago. We were told by ownership that the change in scenery is due to a […]

Inside Schiller’s Liquor Bar While it’s Emptied Out [PHOTOS]

The bright yellow neons of 131 Rivington Street are now indellibly dark. Schiller’s Liquor Bar, which ended service Sunday night after fourteen years on the block, has turned out the lights. So, for the foreseeable future, load-out is in full effect. Contractors are currently dismantling and removing the remaining booze, furnishings, and kitchen equipment from […]

Uneven Ground: Is there a CB3 Double Standard Regarding Chinatown Restaurants? [OP-ED]

The following opinion piece was written by Chinatown activist, and Community Board 3 member Karlin Chan. As a member of Community Board 3, but primarily as a Chinatown resident, activist, and advocate, I cannot keep silent any further. It is disturbing to see CB3 apply different sets of rules when it comes to the SLA subcommittee’s […]