Now New York Has Their Own Version!

Sound familiar?What makes a park a park?
Though the plan is overwhelmingly opposed by NYU’s faculty and neighbors, the city, under Mayor Bloomberg, finally blessed it, handing the university four strips of public parkland for its private use, ostensibly for academic purposes.
The plan’s opponents sued the city, since, under an age-old legal code called the Public Trust Doctrine, parkland may not be “alienated” — meaning, turned into something else — without explicit approval by the state legislature, approval NYU had not obtained. The university and the city skirted that requirement by claiming that those parks are not in fact parks, since they were never formally “mapped” as such (i.e., not transferred officially to the Parks Department).

The Time to Save Our NYC Parks Is Now

By Mark Ruffelo

Huffington Post June 4, 2015

What makes a park a park?

Ordinarily, that might be a question for a New York dinner party. Today, it is an urgent legal question before the New York Court of Appeals. For our state’s highest court will either save our city parks, by reaffirming a time-honored civic principle, or they will throw it out, and so allow the city to seize countless open spaces long enjoyed as public parks, and hand them over to private developers, without approval from the state Legislature.

Such is the looming consequence of New York University’s plan to bulk up its Greenwich Village presence with four huge towers — roughly 2 million square feet of commercial real estate — crammed onto the two residential blocks just south of Washington Square.

Though the plan is overwhelmingly opposed by NYU’s faculty and neighbors, the city, under Mayor Bloomberg, finally blessed it, handing the university four strips of public parkland for its private use, ostensibly for academic purposes.

Read the entire article here

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