Friday, October 12, 2012

Fool us twice, shame on us...

From the Daily News:

Bronx activists had some advice on Tuesday for Queens: Keep your precious park land and ignore the stadium sweet talk.

Major League Soccer said it’s close to hammering out a deal with the city to build a $300 million stadium on up to 13 acres in Flushing Meadows-Corona Park.

But the plan is reminiscent of a Yankee Stadium land deal that “shortchanged” the Bronx, local activist Mary Blassingame said.

“This is Yankee Stadium all over again,” she said. “They need to fight against it. Parks are for the people ... not for business.”

City officials begged to differ.

“As anyone who’s been to Heritage Field across from Yankee Stadium would say, it’s a stunning example of public space that has been widely celebrated by local residents and parks advocates alike,” said Mayor’s Office spokeswoman Lauren Passalacqua.

Blassingame, a former Bronx Community Board 4 member, was a vocal opponent of the 2005 deal that allowed the Yankees to build a new stadium on 22 acres in Mullaly Park.

The Bronx Bombers promised the new venue would create local jobs and business and the city vowed to replace the green space with new parks elsewhere.

But the area near the stadium is still struggling and it took the city six years to complete the new parks, which are top-of-the-line but scattered, Blassingame said. “We got shortchanged all the way and now it’s going to happen again,” Blassingame predicted.

“The land they’re currently talking about on Flushing River is toxic,” said an elected official who asked not to be named. “So how would that be cleaned up?”

MLS officials said the Queens stadium will be privately financed, unlike Yankee Stadium, which received hundreds of millions of dollars in subsidies.

The Bronx Bombers made similar claims during early negotiations, said Neil DeMause, co-author of “Field of Schemes,” a book on modern stadium deals.

“History makes it reasonable for New Yorkers to look at this proposal with skepticism,” he said.


Anonymous said...

so .... can someone pull the politicians away from photo ops and street naming and the like and get a straight answer here?

seen the queens weeklies lately? no news like a decade or so, just shilling for developers and one picture after another of the joe crowley and the boys fighting for their communities, er well, getting their picture in the paper.

Anonymous said...

Look out that an 11th hour compromise
doesn't wind up locating this stadium on the site
of the old Flushing Airport!

And there would be no objections
from that "illustrious" board of asses at CB#7 either.

Anonymous said...

I think the tennis upgrades are not bad; but the soccer stadium is not a good idea. How about upgrading Metropolitan Oval?

Anonymous said...

Exactly how did these people (who likely pay litle or no taxes, mind you) get "shortchanged"? I missed the explanantion of that part.

Anonymous said...

Look out that an 11th hour compromise
doesn't wind up locating this stadium on the site
of the old Flushing Airport!
Good luck with that. It's now primarily federally protected wetlands.

Anonymous said...

Anon No. 4: First of all, who says that they pay little or no taxes?

Secondly and more importantly, they had a large amount of public parkland taken away from them to build, in effect, a private facility. The parkland they got back was not an adequate replacement for what they lost. What is it that you don't understand?

Anonymous said...

Federally "protected" land
has been compromised before!

It all depends on who becomes our next president.

There's an awful lot of oil in Alaska on
similarly "protected" land.

Wanna lay odds that we'll be drilling on it soon?

You must be some cockeyed optimist,
or else you've swallowed the government Kool Aid.

Anonymous said...

It's been told that Jack Bitterman,
gets free US Open passes.

Will he be also getting free tickets to the soccer games after CB#7 sells out the community once again?