Senator Montgomery wrote to Commissioner Mitchell J. Silver and Brooklyn Borough Commissioner Martin Maher of the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation to express her dismay and strong objection to OneNYC’s “Parks without Borders” proposal to redesign and renovate the Myrtle Avenue portion of Fort Greene Park without input from the community.
In response to constituent concerns about “Parks without Borders” proposal, Senator Montgomery's letter noted:
My constituents residing in the Walt Whitman Houses, Ingersoll Houses, Kingsview Houses and University Towers have long viewed Fort Greene Park as part of their backyard. The park area on Myrtle Avenue between Washington Park and St. Edwards Street where the barbecue pits, tables, benches are located are heavily utilized by people from the neighborhood.
For generations, residents have gathered in Fort Greene Park with family members and friends for an array of recreational and social activities. On any given day you can find family events such as birthday parties and family reunions taking place; kids playing on the basketball court; families and seniors gathering on benches to enjoy the fresh air; and people exercising on the outdoor gym equipment These family memories and experiences of camaraderie have become part of our neighborhood’s social fabric and encapsulates the sense of community that has built Fort Greene into what it is today.
Fort Greene Park is an important public resource that is enjoyed by neighbors of all ages, cultures and incomes.
The need for improvements should not be used as an opportunity to restrict access to open space and eliminate trees from a public park.
I urge the New York City Parks Department to develop an inclusive engagement process includes an extensive outreach plan that will permit all residents to weigh in on the redevelopment of this important urban space.
To read Senator Montgomery's entire letter to the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation, please download the attached PDF.
UPDATE: To read the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation response letter, visit https://www.nysenate.gov/newsroom/articles/velmanette-montgomery/senator...