NEW YORK (AP/1010 WINS) -- A community board in Queens has voted in favor of a plan backed by Mayor Bloomberg to develop a 60-acre site into a new neighborhood of homes, shops, offices and entertainment.
Community Board 7 approved the plan 21 to 15 early Tuesday morning that would transform the gritty area known as Willets Point, near the Mets' new baseball stadium.
About 70 people spoke before the board at the meeting that began Monday evening and lasted into the next morning.
Willets Point land and business owners, along with hundreds of their employees, protested the meeting.
Among many concerns, including traffic congestion, the Willets Point Industry and Realty Association says the project lacks a developer or a formal plan.
STATEMENT BY MAYOR MICHAEL R. BLOOMBERG ON FIRST PUBLIC APPROVAL OF WILLETS POINT REDEVELOPMENT PLAN
"The plan to clean up the environmental contamination at Willets Point and transform it into a vibrant, sustainable neighborhood first originated in community meetings, and tonight's vote by the Community Board is a major step forward in it becoming a reality. The plan will continue to evolve based on input from community members and local representatives - as the board has called for - but the approval tonight demonstrates a desire from the community that this area be remediated from the ground up to make way for more than 5,000 permanent jobs, 18,000 construction jobs, affordable housing and new parks. The next step in the public review process is the Borough President, and the plan goes to her office with the support of elected officials, community, business and labor groups, environmental advocates and now the local Community Board."
Well, as long as it's "vibrant"...
Here's Jeremiah's take on it.