Today the City Council Land Use Committee approved a severely inadequate set of modifications to the fiscally and environmentally irresponsible Governors Island rezoning proposal. These council members have set themselves up for a legacy to be known to usher a “Penn Station 1963 2.0” where a precious public jewel is greedily devoured at the taxpayers’ expense.
Details aside, the issue here is – what is Governors Island going to be? Will it be an irreplaceable one-of-a-kind green urban refuge that essentially functions as a park – even in areas with buildings which provide for the arts and environmental educational projects? Or another high-rise, high-density commercial urban district with boxed in value-added landscaping in a floodplain? Today’s approved modifications will not prevent the latter. The 200 ft plus heights proposed by the Council are three times the height of Lookout Hill on the South Island while many solid historic buildings lie unused. Any new construction should be kept to minimum and not exceed the four-story height of buildings in the historic district.
As Paul Graziano – long time NYC Urban planner and land use and zoning expert said at a May 6th M.A.G.I.C. press conference,
M.A.G.I.C. thanks Council Member Inez Barron for voting no and stating for the record that this plan “is a disservice to maintaining really open space and preserving the environment.”
M.A.G.I.C. has a better plan at https://govislandcoalition.org/a-magic-plan
All items on the agenda were “coupled” meaning that members voted on all about a dozen proposals at once but had the option to separated some out as Inez Barron did.
y = yes on all