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The Community-Based Planning Task Force blog is on hiatus while we work on some internal restructuring. Please check out our archives and our “Resources” section, as well as the Atlas of Community-Based Plans, to learn more about community-based planning in New York City.
Citing a $1.2 billion budget deficit, the MTA has proposed a fare increase up to 23%, coupled with major cutbacks, including decreased service on a number of subway lines; complete elimination of some bus lines and major reductions in others; and permanent closure, reduction of hours, and or reduction in staffing at 42 subway stations citywide. (The changes are outlined in detail here).
While two hearings have been held already (in Queens and Manhattan), three opportunities remain to participate in hearings in New York City:
Mon Jan 26
College of Staten Island, CSI Center for the Arts, Springer Concert Hall
2800 Victory Blvd, Staten Island
Wed Jan 28, 2009
NY Marriott at the Bklyn Bridge
333 Adams St, Brooklyn
Wed Feb 4, 2009
Lehman College, CUNY, Lovinger Theatre
250 Bedford Park Blvd West, Bronx
All hearings begin at 6pm, registration to speak will be open until 9pm, and testimony is limited to three minutes. Comments can also be submitted in writing to:Douglas Sussman Dir, MTA Community Affairs 347 Madison Av NY, NY 10017
As 2008 draws to a close, we present a look back on some of the major issues we covered in the first full year of the Community-Based Planning Task Force’s blog:
Did you know that 750,000 New Yorkers live in “food deserts,” without adequate access to healthy food options? Or that one quarter of the residents of Harlem and the South Bronx are obese? How about the fact that one if four children in New York City are hungry? Or that, on average, boedgas charge between 13% and 76% more for food than supermarkets?
These were just some of the issues addressed at this morning’s conference, The Politics of Food: New York’s Next Policy Challenge, hosted by Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer at Columbia University. Speakers included United Nations General Assembly President Miguel d’Escoto Brockmann, Mayor Michael Bloomberg, and Center for Social Inclusion Director Maya Wiley. Participants then broke up into seven issue groups to discuss the future of food policy in the City.
Among the ideas floated in the group dedicated to “Finding Healthy Food” were:
- using zoning incentives to encourage developers to locate supermarkets in their buildings
- including impact on food access in environmental review of new developments
- expanding the use of programs such as WIC and food stamps at greenmarkets
- encouraging community involvement in the creation of requests for proposals for new development.
Stringer’s staff will review the results of today’s conference as they move forward with policy recommendations to address the City’s food needs. What are some of your ideas about how to promote and encourage access to fresh, healthy food options?
The Times takes a look at the impact of the economic crisis on Harlem. Yes, it may slow gentrification, but it may also cause much-needed grant funding to dry up.
The City Planning Commission approved a new sanitation garage for the west end of Spring Street, and a lawsuit from the community is already in the works, reports Downtown Express.
Streetsblog checks in on the Bronx Hub, where a “major livable streets makeover” is in the works.
Eminent domain was the main issue on our minds this week. Atlantic Yards was back in court, appealing the decision in the case challenging the project’s environmental review. According to Atlantic Yards Report, “While the lawsuit covers an enormous area of ground, including the definition of a ‘civic project,’ whether a ten-year project buildout was realistic, and whether the ESDC properly studied terrorism, among other issues, the final round of appeal papers focused mainly on blight.” AYR gave background on Tuesday, and covered Wednesday’s court proceedings.
AYR was also there at State Senator Perkins’ eminent domain hearing, which we attended on Wednesday, and provided more in-depth coverage.
AYR also covered Thursday’s Congressional hearing in Washington, titled “Gaming the Tax Code: Public Subsidies, Private Profits, and Big League Sports in New York,” which focused primarily on Yankee Stadium. This hearing made headlines when Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D-OH) said that there is “substantial evidence of improprieties and possible fraud” in the new Yankee Stadium development.
One non-Atlantic Yards Report link of note: it’s Park(ing) Day in NYC, so if you haven’t get, get out there and help reclaim a parking space with some grass! Check out this map to find a spot near you.
Photo of the Spalding building, in the AY footprint, by Threecee on Flickr.