Park Advocates, Villagers, Elected Officials Join @ Rally/Press Conference to Keep the Village Green/Save the Village Featuring a Performance by the World Famous STOMP; NYU, City Try to Overturn Decision That Would Save Parks from Destruction by NYU Expansion
On Wednesday, September 24th, parks, gardens and open space supporters from across the City held a rally at Greenwich Village’s LaGuardia Park, decrying NYU’s and the City’s appeal of the court decision that saved that park and two other Village parks from being destroyed. The appeal was heard after the rally, at the Appellate Division’s First Department.
Members of the internationally acclaimed East Village-based group STOMP joined the crowd and did a short performance.
The three parks in question – Mercer Playground, LaGuardia Park and LaGuardia Corner Gardens- were at risk of destruction for the sake of NYU’s outsized and unwanted 2031 expansion plan. On January 7th, Judge Donna Mills vindicated the position of parks advocates and community members by officially declaring those parks as City parkland, effectively halting redevelopment efforts by NYU that would have stripped the community of that precious open space. NYU’s rejection of that decision and its subsequent appeal (through the City) have left a bitter taste in the mouths of many Village residents, NYU faculty, parks and open space advocates and elected officials.
Speakers included Congressman Jerry Nadler; Assembly Member Deborah Glick; State Senators Brad Hoylman and Daniel Squadron; Public Advocate Tish James; David Gruber, Chair of Community Board #2; Former Parks Commissioner ; Actress Kathleen Chalfant; ’s President Mark Crispin Miller; and GVSHP’s Executive Director Andrew Berman.