Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Brooklyn & Queens: compare & contrast

Brooklyn, McCarren Pool:

Parks Comm- issioner Adrian Benepe acted upon his stated commitment to put water back into the pool and this past spring formally initiated a $45 million fund-raising campaign for its restoration. That was shortly followed by the Mayor Bloomberg Miracle, $50 million to restore McCarren Pool, one of the largest capital budget projects coming out of City Hall this spring. It was a surprise even to Parks. - Phyllis Yampolsky, President, McCarren Park Conservancy

Queens, Flushing Meadows- Corona Park:

"Sorry, we don't have enough money in the budget to fix the NYS Pavilion." - Michael Bloomberg & Adrian Benepe

Brooklyn, McCarren Pool:

...a day and evening gathering spot, a site of low key entertainment and exhibitry for all ages, farmers market, food court, a place like no other in the city. And in the center of the piazza, a fountain statue of Mae West, a native of Greenpoint, Brooklyn. - Phyllis Yampolsky, President, McCarren Park Conservancy

Queens, Flushing Meadows-Corona Park:

The debacle at the New York State Pavilion, and throughout numerous projects at Flushing Meadows, tells you that results matter perhaps in Manhattan -- but not in Queens. Not in the park that houses the main headquarters for the Parks Department. Not in our own backyard. Not in the park that we pretend is so beautiful for only a few short weeks during the USTA's US Open Tennis Tournament when we light and fill the reflecting pools and then keep them drained for the other eleven months of the year. Not in the park that allowed the USTA to turn its back on it. Not in the park that allows the Hall of Science to expand, while under the same breath states "no more museums!" (We suggested using the NY State Pavilion for the Hall of Science expansion space and were quickly told "do not go there.") Not in the park that so proudly boasts astro-turf soccer fields with the maple leaf Park Logo in the LaGuardia Airport flight path. (But when we had a major airline willing to put advertising on the top of the pavilion in return for a springboard to stabilization funding we were told "no advertising in the park." But go ahead and allow naming rights to the new Mets stadium located within parks property and of course that will be OK.) - Frankie Campione, AIA, Principal, CREATE Architecture Planning & Design

P.S. No statues of famous actors here, but at least we have a post office named for Len Stavisky and part of Queens Boulevard named for Tom Manton.

How the city views us....

Brooklyn, McCarren Pool:

Yuppies moving in. Let's pretty it up for them.

Queens, Flushing Meadows-Corona Park:

Immigrants and blue collar schmucks? Let them eat cake.

McCarren photo from Brooklyn Record


Anonymous said...

The pool will immediately provide a useful service to that community, and so it's a good investment. Restoring the NY State Pavilion won't make sense until/unless a suitable use is found for it.

Anonymous said...

A detailed plan for an air museum was proposed for the NYS Pavilion and the city wanted no part of it.

Anonymous said...

The Pavilion is landmarked and the city has the obligation to take care of it.

Mae West NYC said...

Is there really a statue of MAE WEST in Brooklyn? Or was that just "wishful thinking" stuff posted here by P. Yampolsky? If there is a statue of MAE WEST, can you tell me where to see a photo of it? Many thanks to you for such an interesting blog here.

Phil said...

"The Pavilion is landmarked and the city has the obligation to take care of it"

On paper, maybe. In Queens, however, the city neglects our landmarks hoping that they will fall down so they don't have to restore or maintain them. It's pretty obvious.

mae should have said...

"Come up and see me sometime!"

Anonymous said...

There is no statue of Mae West yet. It's part of the conservancy's proposal for the pool.

Anonymous said...

With all the multicultural prattle that NYC
is so adept at slinging out around election time.....
WE KNOW what our "city fathers" REALLY THINK
of its hordes of unwashed immigrants.

Our Department of City Plotting
has another dirty little plan on the books:

"Head 'em up....move 'em out" !
(Drive them steers to the rail head)!

Free up Corona for "upscale" development!
Take a look....it's already happening!

Anonymous said...

By the way....
the city isn't legally required to maintain a landmark that they own.

In fact they can rescind that status any time they wish .

The NYS Pavilion's landmark status
is observed by NYC out of pure courtesy.
(So are Flushing & Newtown High Schools, fire houses, bridges, public pools, etc).

Anonymous said...

The Pavillion would serve a useful purpose if it was just fixed up enough so people could go up to the top again and take in the great views. There aren't any lookout decks like this anywhere else in Queens that are open to the public. Maybe it's just as well. Looking down on the borough from up high would really give a person a sense of how overdeveloped Queens has become.

Anonymous said...

The Brooklyn pool has a viable multi-purpose use that benefits the community. The Pavilion is a useless landmark. Come up with a better alternative use than an observation deck (i.e. hang out)and it might get funding.

Anonymous said...

uh, the pavilion is NOT a landmark (despite hundreds of requests). the only landmarks in Flushing Park are the Unisphere & reflecting pool.

Anonymous said...

The NYS Pavilion should be transformed into the air and space museum. We need more science for our kids.

$50 million for a pool? Are they filling it with gold?

The park's department is a virtual organization filled with bs.

fhdogs said...

Although I'd love to see the pavilion brought back to its glory days, let's not forget the Flushing meadows is in the process of getting a $35 Million dollar multi-sports facility which is scheduled to open this winter.

Anonymous said...

Since when does a landmark have to have a useful purpose that's benificial to the community? The Unisphere doesn't, afterall, except as a place for skateboarders to congregate. I guess you might argue that parents can teach their children geography with it, which is actually sort of important as kids don't learn anything in school these days.

Jay said...

Keep the pool for concerts. I saw a great Gov't Mule show there last summer! :)