Link to the article on the Greenpoint Gazette website here or read it below!
Friends of Bushwick Inlet Regroups to Push City on 2005 Promises
Oct 02, 2014
by Tanay Warerkar
Community activists in support of increasing open space along the Williamsburg waterfront are reinvigorating their drive to attain land promised to them in the city’s 2005 rezoning of North Brooklyn.
Friends of Bushwick Inlet Park, the neighborhood group spearheading community outreach and feedback in regards to the area, will meet later this month to plan strategies for communicating with the DeBlasio administration and to obtain input from neighbors. This will be the group’s first concentrated effort in about two years.
It has been almost 10 years since the rezoning took effect and the City committed about six plots of land covering 28-acres in the Bushwick Inlet for parks space, however the city has followed through with only project thus far, the soccer field located off of Kent Avenue between North 8th and 9th Streets.
The Friend’s focus had diminished in recent years, explained Group member Laura Treciokas, with members moving away and new residents coming into the neighborhood. The group is a volunteer run organization and depends entirely on the support of active community participating to carry out its work.
“We want this meeting to be a place where people can talk about what they want now,” said Treciokas. “It’s very important that this is a community led effort. And it’s not just the creation of new parks but also the stewardship of the existing ones.”
The North Brooklyn representative for the City’s Parks Department will be at the October 21st meeting to discuss new developments in the City’s fulfillment of the rezoning agreement.
According to Treciokas, a large part of the problem also lies in the change in the City’s administration. She is uncertain whether the DeBlasio administration is even aware of the lack of progress at Bushwick Inlet Park.
As part of the rezoning, the city had at the time agreed to purchase six pieces of land on the waterfront from six different organizations. So far it has only purchased three, according to the Friends of Bushwick Inlet Park, and subsequently only used one of those pieces of land for the creation of the soccer field.
As originally envisioned the 28-acre park would have had stretched from North 9th Street to Quay street along the Bushwick Inlet and would have included a boat launch, a museum dedicated to the USS Monitor, volleyball courts, gardens, performance spaces, a dog run, and a two mile bicycle path.
Friends of Bushwick Inlet Park update community meeting, Tuesday, October 21, 7 p.m., Bushwick Inlet Park Community Meeting Room.