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Anti-CG Article in today's NY Post

  • Subject: [cg] Anti-CG Article in today's NY Post
  • From: "Honigman, Adam" <Adam.Honigman@Bowne.com>
  • Date: Mon, 14 Jan 2002 14:56:25 -0500


This New York Post anti-community garden nastygram was posted to the NYC
Cybergardens listserver by good friend, Brooklyn Garden activist Mark Leger
as a public service to those of us who don't buy the paper on principle. ( I
confess that I do - cartoons by right-winger Sean Delonas can be very funny
in their wrongheadedness.) The race baiting tone is very much NY Post. 

Incidentally, the  La Plaza Cultural is both an amazing arts venue as well
as community garden. With the destruction of the Charas Cultural center by
real estate interests, the La Plaza Cultural community garden becomes doubly
precious for the area.    

Incidentally, Garden activist and artist Carolyn Ratcliffe, who is probably
misquoted or selectively quoted in the article, is a marvelous garden

Best wishes,
Adam Honigman 

News from the CYBERGARDENS mailing list 


Elizabeth Acevedo (left) and Zulma Zayas fear urban gardens like this will
cost Lower East Side neighborhoods millions in federal aid for affordable
- NYP: Don Halasy 
January 14, 2002 -- Lower East Side housing advocates are fuming over a
battle to save a pair of community gardens that they fear will cost the
neighborhood $16 million worth of federally funded housing for the elderly.

The turf war, pitting urban gardeners and artists against activists for the
low-income elderly, is also a battle over the future of a neighborhood east
of Tompkins Square that's in the throes of gentrification.

"We have these people who come from Kansas and Oklahoma, and wherever else,
who think they have a right to their own private gardens," fumed lifelong
resident Elizabeth Acevedo.

"What we desperately need is affordable housing," she said.

Acevedo wants to see a massive garden at the corner of Avenue C and East
Ninth Street used instead for subsidized housing for 81 senior citizens - a
project she'd like to get her elderly mother into.

A second building for 75 seniors is also planned for East Sixth Street, the
site of a much smaller garden.

Gardeners, who view their tended plots as hallowed ground, say there are
already enough senior citizens in a neighborhood that is quickly becoming
too pricey for low-income elderly.

"People who are going to be living in this building won't be able to eat in
the restaurants," said Carolyn Ratcliffe, a longtime member of the garden on
Avenue C called La Plaza Cultural.

Ratcliffe said senior-citizen housing should be built farther south, near
Grand Street, where there are more public services for the elderly.

The Avenue C housing proposal is sponsored by the Lower East Side Coalition
Housing Development Corp.

The group was awarded $8.6 million by Washington more than two years ago,
and the city and local community board have given the green light for the
proposed six-story building.

Grand Street Settlement, another social-services group, has been sitting on
a $7.5 million federal grant for its 75 units planned for East Sixth Street,
which also has city and local approvals.

But the projects were stopped dead in their tracks when state Attorney
General Eliot Spitzer filed suit against the city to stop the sale of about
100 vacant parcels, many of which had been turned into gardens.

Spitzer said the projects had parks designation, requiring the state
Legislature to approve their sale. A temporary restraining order was issued
last year, and the case is still pending.

Leaders for groups sponsoring the housing say they don't know how long
Washington will continue to extend their funding.

"Ever since Sept. 11, these have been difficult times, and we don't know how
long the money will be around," said Zulma Zayas, a director of the Lower
East Side Housing Coalition.


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