"With several development proposals pending, Flushing Meadows Corona Park could soon undergo a drastic face lift – and many local residents are not happy about it. On Sept. 17, local elected officials, including State Sen. Tony Avella (D-Bayside), Councilwoman Julissa Ferreras (D-Elmhurst), Councilman Daniel Dromm (D-Jackson Heights), and Councilman Leroy Comrie (D-St. Albans) joined hundreds of residents for a town hall meeting held at Our Lady of Sorrows Catholic Church in Corona."
It's good to see all of the electeds come out-and especially because of the message delivered by Monsignor Healy:
"We are the closest community to Willets Point. That’s why we are here tonight,” Healy said. “Families in Corona need living wage jobs, not massive stadiums or shopping malls that will create poverty-wage jobs and only serve the interests of wealthy developers.”
Powerful stuff that should be headed. What struck us the most was the power point presentation made by Professor Donavon Finn-a planner with a good eye for what's wrong with these development concepts:
"In my professional opinion, I think all of these plans are deeply flawed,” Finn said. “The biggest problem is that all of these developers are acting as if the other plans do not exist.”He went on to deride the idea that, once removed, the parkland would be replaced, stating that:
"...if each of the proposals are approved, Flushing Meadows’ public park space would be reduced from 1,255 acres to a mere couple hundred acres."The Queens Chronicle also weighs in on this community protest:
"On Monday at Our Lady of Sorrows Catholic Church in Corona hundreds of Flushing Meadows Park neighbors voiced concerns about development proposals that would subtract open space without adding any affordable housing to the neighborhoods surrounding the park.
“I learned to ride my bike here and my kids might not have that chance,” Queens resident Steven Moyano said. Although nothing is set in stone, three developments could take away significant green space in the 1,255-acre park. Because the sites are on public parkland, any development would need approval from both the City Council and state legislature and would have to mitigate the used land with an equal amount of new parkland in another location within New York City, not necessarily in Queens."
"Councilwoman Julissa Ferreras (D-East Elmhurst) said she will be meeting with all the developers and they will “have to sell” the proposals to the community “Every inch of developed parkland is park space we won’t get back,” Ferreras said."