Dear Mayor Bloomberg:
I am a lifelong (60 years) resident of Maspeth, as were my parents and grandparents. I am hoping to convince the City to acquire the land of the former St. Saviour's Church and turn it into a park.
This area goes back to the beginning of Maspeth. Where Newtown Creek ended, the first Dutch settlement began among the native people. Maspeth was the first chartered settlement on Long Island. During the Revolutionary War, local homes were used by the British as their headquarters. Former mayor, governor, senator, etc., DeWitt Clinton's home was here across the street from the St. Saviour's property. The land was donated by Congressman Maurice for community needs and was known as Maspeth Hill.
The area around Newtown Creek became a major industrial area in NYC, and it's said that more tonnage was carried on Newtown Creek than the Mississippi River during WWII.
Growing up in Maspeth, Newtown Creek was the source of a lot of bad smells and it's said to be the most polluted waterway in the city. In the aquifer under the creek is the largest oil spill in the U.S. because of 100 years of refining oil. It is only now beginning to be cleaned up.
This property borders on the industrial area and is surrounded by homes in need of a park. The nearest park is Maurice Park and it's quite a distance away, much further than your plan of having a park within walking distance of every New Yorker. Last year, this property was a city block filled with 100-year old trees now it is a wasteland filled with dumpsters and trucks.
Mayor, you did a good thing for Elmhurst when a park was made where the Elmhurst Gas Tanks were. How about improving the quality of life and our air and create a park for Maspeth.
Does Queens need more open space or more warehouses?