Friday, June 27, 2008

Thompson to Parks on Reservoir: "I don't think so."

Citing concerns about the environmental impact, increased truck traffic, and the vendor selection process, New York City Comptroller William C. Thompson, Jr. today announced that his office has rejected a contract by the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation to develop a portion of the Ridgewood Reservoir into sports fields.

In a letter to Parks’ Chief Contracting Officer, the Comptroller’s Office returned the contract “to allow additional time for your agency to respond to our concerns pertaining to potential scope changes due to environmental review uncertainties and for administrative issues.”


Parks submitted the $3.3 million contract forged with Mark K. Morrison Associates LTD (MMA) for registration on May 29. The agreement called for MMA to provide landscape design services for the reconstruction of Highland Park at the Ridgewood Reservoir site in Queens.

Parks has been considering a $50 million “renovation” project that would replace a large swath of Ridgewood wilderness with athletic fields, claiming that the project is necessary to help combat child obesity. However, Thompson has consistently urged the City to rethink its plans to develop the 50-acre site.

Thompson also cautioned that Parks was in the process of meeting with agencies regarding environmental assessment issues, and that an Environmental Assessment Statement (EAS) EAS could be included as a separate fee in any proposal. That information would help in determining whether adverse effects on the environment may be significant enough to warrant further analysis.

The Comptroller further questioned the selection process. The vendor was selected from among three participants through a quasi-competitive process. Thompson noted that changes to the design that may arise from the environmental and public assessments may significantly impact the vendor’s proposal.

“Given the sensitive ecological nature of the location, we strongly believe that the environmental assessment process must have maximum transparency,” the letter reads. “In that light, we are also concerned that it may be a conflict of interest to have the EAS vendor be a subcontractor to the architect, who has a vested interest in pursuing the construction.”

Thompson's letter to Parks is here: Ridgewood Letter


Anonymous said...

Thank goodness Bill Thompson is doing his job. As I said, "follow the money."

Anonymous said...

Wow imagine that...a politician doing what the people wants and not following a selfish agenda.

Anonymous said...

Come on who are you kidding?!?!

As if the type of people that read this blog would vote for a black man.


Queens Crapper said...

"As if the type of people that read this blog would vote for a black man."

Apparently we did because he's in office now.

Anonymous said...

Yes, and voted in twice.

Some people can only bitch and never pick up a shovel, or at least applaud when someone does a good job.

Anonymous said...

Comptroller and Mayor are two differant things.

Queens Crapper said...

Yes, they are separate offices. See "David Dinkins, 1989" for the time that NYC voted for a black mayor.

Anonymous said...

Queens also voted for Helen Marshall who is black.

Anonymous said...

Thompson was voted Comptroller twice. hahahahahaha to you. Have you picked up a shovel yet or don't you know what I mean by that?

Anonymous said...

yeah, and you guys absolutly loved David Dinkins and Helen Marshall and I am sure the turnout for them in District 30 and the surrounding districts was just monumental.

Truman Harris said...

Helen Marshall was voted in twice by an overwhelming margin in Council District 30. Dinkins, wasn't, but then again, he proved to be a bad choice and a one-termer.