In the news: MillionTreesNYC Month, NY City Council, Randall’s Island

In the News Today …

  • Metro new york covers Mayor Bloomberg’s hypocrisy in declaring April “MillionTreesNYC Month.” Metro writer Patrick Arden follows the Parks Department’s seemingly endless acts of arborcide across the five boroughs. Perhaps we’re all missing the point – maybe Mayor Bloomberg’s actual goal is to chop DOWN a Million Trees in NYC?
  • New York City Council Parks Committee Chair Helen Foster (Bronx) received her own bit of press today in the New York Times, “Conspicuous absence on Congestion Pricing Vote.” She is cited for being the only City Council member absent for this “important” vote on Monday(3/31).

Although the Times says that Council Member Foster stood up to the Mayor on the Yankee Stadium deal (which gave away Bronx parkland), it’s not exactly the full story. Ultimately, she came out against it, but, in what was a key measure early on, she introduced the legislation before the Committee on State and Federal Legislation which gave Albany the “go-ahead to alienate the parks.” (Metro NY, “How the South Bronx lost its parks to Yanks,” March 14, 2006)

The Times’ article takes a shot at the City Council when they state that council members “have provided little resistance to the mayor’s initiatives in recent years.” Could that be linked to Christine Quinn’s emergence as Speaker of the Council?

  • Apparently, thousands of trees have already been sacrificed on Randall’s Island but at least people will be able to play tennis. (Randall’s Island is run by the Randall’s Island Sports Foundation, another example of the “public-private partnership” of which Mayor Bloomberg, and Giuliani before him, is such a big proponent.) There are 100-150 fewer tennis courts in Manhattan than there were in the ’70’s, according to the managing partner of Sportime, the private corporation “breaking ground” tomorrow(4/3). He does not delve into how many fewer trees there are.