Wednesday, October 01, 2014

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Residents Speak Out Against Brooklyn Bridge Park Development Plans

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Some Brooklyn residents say its time for a change of plans when it comes to development in Brooklyn Bridge Park, and they spoke out at a community meeting held at Borough Hall Wednesday. NY1's Jeanine Ramirez filed the following report.

Fourteen different designs have been proposed for residential development on a parcel of land located within Brooklyn Bridge Park, but any housing there is being met with much opposition.

"We don't need these towers. We need green space," said one local resident.

"They want to continue to build and take precious land away, which should be turned over to the park. It should be open space," said another.

The new development was debated at a park board meeting Wednesday.

Housing was always part of the blueprint for Brooklyn Bridge Park. While it was built with city and state funding, the money generated from housing is expected to keep the park self-sustaining.

"In terms of our financial model, that it's been a success," said Regina Myer, president of Brooklyn Bridge Park.

Development on Pier 6 was part of the deal when the the project was approved a decade ago, but opponents argue enough money is being generated by the existing housing, and the plan is outdated.

"Assumptions made a decade ago about revenue from housing are way off base," said state Senator Daniel Squadron, whose district covers parts of Manhattan and Brooklyn.

"The development of the park is reaching a point where we're all very, very seriously concerned," said one local resident.

The board voted 10 to 3 not to revisit the park plan. It said development is only 10 percent of its 85 acres, and 30 percent of this housing is affordable.

"The housing market has become stronger in Brooklyn, and that's why we feel really great that we're able to include affordable housing in this proposal," Myer said.

While the board will consider the new proposals, it can't move forward with the plan because opponents filed a lawsuit to block the development that's tied up in the courts.

In the meantime, the board agreed to do an environmental assessment for Pier 6.

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