Sections

De Blasio won’t befriend parks

TimesLedger Newspapers
Share on TwitterTweet
Share on Facebook
Subscribe

Get our stories in your inbox, free.

Like TimesLedger on Facebook.

In a mayoral debate Oct. 22 between candidates Democratic city Public Advocate Bill de Blasio and Republican Joseph Lhota, a question came up concerning a professional soccer stadium in Flushing Meadows Corona Park.

Lhota said “urban parks are a precious patrimony, and in the densest of American cities it is rarely wise to auction off greensward.” If the wealthy cannot be found to toss together a conservancy, “a mayor should find a way to pay for that park.” There is no ambiguity where Lhota stands.

Nor is there ambiguity where de Blasio stands. He said a “pro soccer stadium might raise the money needed to give that dowdy dowager of a park a facelift.” It is clear de Blasio as mayor will be no friend to FMCP. He is blind to the fact notwithstanding FMCP is one of the most used in our municipal park system primarily by the less privileged. It is also the dumping ground for non-urban park structures and the most abused.

In 1895, Frederick Law Olmstead, who created Central and Prospect parks and other parks elsewhere, said, “The survival of our park system requires the exclusion from its management of real estate dealers and politicians and that the first duty of our park trustees is to hand down from one generation to the next the treasure of scenery which the city has placed in their care.”

Olmstead’s remarks more than 100 years ago are more pertinent today.

Benjamin Haber

Flushing

Posted 12:00 am, November 12, 2013
Today’s news:
Share on TwitterTweet
Share on Facebook
Subscribe

Get our stories in your inbox, free.

Like TimesLedger on Facebook.

Reader feedback

Benny Wong from Queens says:
From this article, it seems like parks will be ripe for reduction by money hungry companies and nonenvironmental groups. De Blasio position quote “pro soccer stadium might raise the money needed to give that dowdy dowager of a park a facelift.” sounds like parks advocates are going to have an uphill battle with the new mayor for years to come. Parks budget will experience painful cuts during the De Blasio administration. Reduction in the sizes of many of our parks throughout the city will be degrade our precious resources forever as it's very difficult to reclaim back within an urban environment.
Nov. 12, 2013, 9:34 am
Jack from Elmhurst says:
While it's true that de Blaiso has been shaky on the stadium in FMCP issue, the above letter requires a fact-check.

De Blasio never said that a "pro soccer stadium might raise the money needed to give that dowdy dowager of a park a facelift." In fact, NYT columnist Michael Powell wrote that in his 10/23 column in reference to de Blasio's debate comments.
Nov. 12, 2013, 3:52 pm
Neil from Brooklyn says:
DeBlasio isgoing to be looking for patronage money. Lots of luck!
Nov. 12, 2013, 3:58 pm
Benny Wong from Queens says:
Fact-checked According to the article written by Michael Powell on 10/23, Mr. Powell stated:

"Early on Tuesday night, he was asked about Major League Soccer’s attempt to place a Spaceship-Enterprise-size soccer stadium in the midst of Flushing Meadows, Queens’s densest and most heavily used park. He cleared his throat with some populist rumbling about city tax giveaways. Then he allowed that, well, perhaps, maybe, a pro soccer stadium might raise the money needed to give that dowdy dowager of a park a face-lift."

Did these two sources just happen to agree and have the same De Blasio pro soccer stadium view point?
Nov. 12, 2013, 4:32 pm
Kenneth Kowald from I Sit and Look Out says:
Open space, like freedom, needs constant attention. If these words are a warning about what might come in a new administration, vigilance will be required, until this stadium idea is no longer a problem.

Kenneth Kowald
Nov. 14, 2013, 12:02 pm

Enter your comment below

By submitting this comment, you agree to the following terms:

You agree that you, and not TimesLedger.com or its affiliates, are fully responsible for the content that you post. You agree not to post any abusive, obscene, vulgar, slanderous, hateful, threatening or sexually-oriented material or any material that may violate applicable law; doing so may lead to the removal of your post and to your being permanently banned from posting to the site. You grant to TimesLedger.com the royalty-free, irrevocable, perpetual and fully sublicensable license to use, reproduce, modify, adapt, publish, translate, create derivative works from, distribute, perform and display such content in whole or in part world-wide and to incorporate it in other works in any form, media or technology now known or later developed.

CNG: Community Newspaper Group