ST-PCV tenants meet District 4 City Council candidates

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By Kristy Ye-Ling

On Saturday afternoon, crowds came out for a meet and greet in Stuyvesant Oval with nine City Council candidates hoping to replace Dan Garodnick next year.

The representatives at the event, which was organized by the Stuyvesant Town-Peter Cooper Village Tenants Association, were Rachel Honig (D), Jeffrey Mailman (D), Keith Powers (D), Bessie R. Schachter (D), Marti Speranza (D), Maria Castro (D), Barry Shapiro (D) and Vanessa Aronson. Republican Rebecca Harary, who’s an Orthodox Jew, couldn’t travel on the Sabbath but had a representative there.

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Neighborhood not on board with nixing Stuyvesant name

Following the Confederate monument controversy in Charlottesville and other Southern cities, debate has been swirling around New York City statues that could be considered symbols of hate, including The Peter Stuyvesant statue in Stuyvesant Square Park. (Photo by Sabina Mollot)

By Maria Rocha-Buschel

While states in the South wrangle with whether or not to remove statues of Confederate soldiers, the controversy over monuments has moved closer to home for New Yorkers, with a group of Jewish activists advocating for the removal of Peter Stuyvesant’s name and monuments from city property because the former director-general was anti-Semitic. However, residents of Stuyvesant Town and park-goers in Stuyvesant Square this week weren’t having it.

“It’s all a waste of time,” said longtime Stuyvesant Town resident Don Burkett. “It’s all of this politically correct nonsense. All the problems in the country and they’re worried about a statue.”

The New York Post along with a handful of Jewish media outlets reported last week that the Shurat HaDin-Israel Law Center is demanding the mayor remove all mentions of Stuyvesant from city property in a bid to remove “symbols of hate” from the city.

“It would be like if they wanted to rename Gramercy,” said Peg Reilly, an artist who has been living on Avenue C for the last 20 years. “Who cares at this point? It’s history.”

Residents of Stuyvesant Town and park-goers in Stuyvesant Square alike said they weren’t even aware of Stuyvesant’s anti-Semitic proclivities.

Stuyvesant was said to have resisted Jewish refugees from Brazil from settling in New Amsterdam, and was also known to have been against additional religions other than his own, the Dutch Reform Church, such as Quakers and Lutherans. He also wouldn’t allow Jews to fight in the volunteer militia but then taxed them to have someone else fight in their stead.

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Peter Stuyvesant Little League to debut division for disabled kids

For Stuy Town General Manager Rick Hayduk, the effort is also a family affair. Daughter Jordan (left) is the divsion’s co-chair and daughter Jamison (center) will be a player. (Photos by Sabina Mollot)

By Sabina Mollot

With baseball season about to begin, the Peter Stuyvesant Little League will be debuting a new division for players with disabilities.

The Challenger Division is open to would-be players of any age up to 18 with any type of physical or intellectual disability, and was the idea of Stuyvesant Town General Manager Rick Hayduk.

One of Hayduk’s three daughters, 11-year-old Jamison, has Down Syndrome, and had participated in a Challenger Ball team where the family lived prior to moving to the community, in South Florida. However, there was no local division — until now.

Jeff Ourvan, president of the PSLL, explained that the reason such divisions exist (as opposed to just letting kids with disabilities play on any other team) is for their own safety.

“Some of the kids, I understand, have some fairly restrictive physical disabilities,” explained Ourvan. “Obviously we can’t have those kids playing against 11-year-olds who throw 50 miles per hour. So it’s mostly from a safety perspective.”

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Stuy Town man arrested for dealing meth from apartment

Stuyvesant Town (photo by Sabina Mollot)

Stuyvesant Town (photo by Sabina Mollot)

By Maria Rocha-Buschel

Police arrested an alleged meth dealer living in Stuyvesant Town last week after using the social networking app Grindr to track him down. Harold Gondrez, 65, was arrested in his apartment at 9 Stuyvesant Oval last Thursday at 6:15 a.m. Police had gotten a warrant to a search his apartment  after an undercover officer allegedly bought meth from him multiple times.

The officer who was investigating the case with Narcotics Borough Manhattan South made initial contact with Gondrez through the smartphone app, which is geared towards gay and bisexual men.

Police routinely conduct investigations in which they visit internet sites where drugs are known to be advertised for sale, according to law enforcement sources, and methamphetamine use is prevalent in the gay community. Drugs are typically advertised in coded language that police have come to recognize.

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Stuy Town kid calls 911, keeps his cool when dad has violent spasm

Dylan and Terence Hoey (Photo by Sabina Mollot)

Dylan and Terence Hoey (Photo by Sabina Mollot)

By Sabina Mollot

For Stuyvesant Town resident Terence Hoey, intense and unpredictable spasms, as well as crippling back pain, are simply facts of life. They’re both a result of chronic condition resulting from a back injury, which, on a recent morning, sent Hoey to the hospital for emergency treatment.

“People who have lower back pain — that’s a joy compared to what a spasm does to your body,” Hoey said in a recent conversation with Town & Village. And on the morning of Wednesday, March 18th, the day he went to the hospital, Hoey had about 50.

Hoey, who has since recovered from March 18th incident, said it was fortunate that his nine-year-old son, Dylan, was around at the time when he began having a spasm. Dylan, he said, called 911, when he was completely unable, due to feeling like he was going to pass out.

Hoey added that the severe spasms he had in the shower came just three days after another emergency hospital visit. That time, he’d been out of town with his family and a friend was the one to call 911 for his spasms. The more recent time, however, he was back home, and Dylan was the only other person at home when Hoey called out for help.

He recalled how, despite the pain, he managed to climb out of the shower. Dylan, a third grader at Immaculate Conception, quickly rushed to his dad’s side.

Hoey then instructed him to call 911. When Dylan asked if he should use his cell or the apartment phone, his father told him to use the apartment phone.

Dylan then did as instructed but soon found himself in the somewhat frustrating position of having to explain Stuyvesant Town’s street layout, specifically the lack of cross streets, to the 911 operator. “And that’s the first thing they ask you,” said Hoey. “Dylan said, ‘I’ll say it again, there are no cross streets, I’m telling you.’ I could almost hear him saying, ‘Google it.’”

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Letters to the Editor, Nov. 13

Ice rink is still noisy

What chemicals are in the blue barrels stored in the ice skating rink? Are they hazardous? Fire engines responded to a call at 19 Stuyvesant Oval on Friday evening, October 24 around 8 p.m. (if not then Saturday evening). They were doing a sweep from the top floor on down. Response was perhaps to an odor of gas (not clear on the details of why they came, but I did overhear someone say it was due to the skating rink).

Follow up to the new tented recreational area on a playground that has been a basketball and volley ball court:

Welcome to my world! Those residents who are concerned about the noise level surrounding the new tented recreational area on playground, come to my apartment adjacent to the ice skating rink and you will find out what kind of noise levels that are in store for you! Every afternoon and mornings as well on weekends or holidays you can hear the screams and shouts of unsupervised children as they skate and slam into the boards for hours on end.

Where have you been, Tenants Association and our fave councilman Dan Garodnick regarding the constant disturbing noise level due to construction and deconstruction of the rink each year for months at a time and the daily noise level of the Zamboni cleaning the ice surface? There should be staff members on the ice at all times providing supervision and monitoring the children’s activities and keeping down the noise level. And please don’t scream out “Off the ice!” when a session is completed.

Why don’t they make a bubble or tent over the rink and keep the sound level enclosed as they are now providing at the tented recreational playground? Are we any less worthy of consideration in our neck of the woods?

And how about instead of being charged ridiculous MCIs in perpetuity, how about a rent reduction for the decreased quality of living due to the greed of making money on previously free playground space? Thanks for your consideration.

Richard Axel, ST

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Halloween event for kids in Stuyvesant Town

Nate and Robbi Marmur with their children Ellery and Gorel, dressed up as Peanuts characters. (Photo by Sabina Mollot)

Nate and Robbi Marmur with their children Ellery and Gorel, dressed up as Peanuts characters.

On Saturday afternoon, hundreds headed to the Oval for Stuyvesant Town’s annual Halloween fair for kids. Thanks to sunny skies and weather warm enough for kids to wear their costumes sans jackets, the crowd was even bigger than usual. This year, the free event also included live music, a pumpkin patch, crafts, bounce houses and a pop-up haunted house. There was plenty of creativity from families for costumes, including Peanuts characters (complete with Lucy’s psychiatric help stand), a homemade sanitation truck, a Day of the Dead character and some attendees also dressed up their dogs for a pooch costume contest.

The next big event scheduled to take place in Stuy Town will be the opening of the ice rink on Halloween. Kids who come in costume will get in free.

(Click through for more photos from the event. All photos by Sabina Mollot.)

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Pols sound off over noisy Oval concerts

Better Than Ezra

Better Than Ezra

By Sabina Mollot
Following two concerts that were held in Stuyvesant Town last week, including one by alternative rock group Better Than Ezra, local elected officials are calling on CWCapital to keep the noise level down during future events.
While noise complaints from residents living in Oval buildings following concerts or other big events on the lawn are nothing new, this year there apparently were more complaints than usual.

This was noted in a letter sent to CWCapital Managing Director Andrew MacArthur, which was signed by Council Member Dan Garodnick, Assembly Member Brian Kavanagh and State Senator Brad Hoylman. The letter was dated Tuesday, July 29 and in it, the politicians noted that “people complained from as far away as 272 First Avenue and 524 East 20th Streets,” about the loud music, “despite their efforts to tune it out.”

The letter added that there didn’t seem to be a way for frustrated tenants to complain to “resident services,” and recommended that management figure out a direct way for tenants to be able to reach someone with their concerns.
“On this, and other issues, we would welcome a more user-friendly mechanism for tenants to raise a concern with management,” Hoylman, Kavanagh and Garodnick said.
A spokesperson for CWCapital didn’t respond to a request for comment by T&V’s press time.

The concerts, part of Stuy Town’s returning Music on the Oval series, were limited to just the two concerts this year. The Better Than Ezra concert attracted a crowd of 700 people, according to management’s figures. Last year, the series included a performance by Soul Asylum, known best for the 90s alternative hit “Runaway Train.”

Upcoming events in Stuyvesant Town include film screenings, which are running most Wednesday nights through August 13 for residents and their guests. The next film to be shown is “The Sound of Music” on August 6 at 6 pm. On August 13, “Lego Movie” will be shown at 5 p.m. followed by “Fast and Furious 6” at 7 p.m.

UPDATE: The Tenants Association also released a statement, via email to neighbors, about the noise concerns.

Outdoor concerts taking place this week

Several free, outdoor concerts are scheduled for this week. Read on for details.

The Rutkowski Trio at a concert last year at Stuyvesant Cove Park

The Rutkowski Family Trio at a concert last year at Stuyvesant Cove Park

The Stuyvesant Cove Park Association 2014 Concert Series continues with Paul Sachs, Amy Allison and Dave Murphy on Monday, July 21 from 6:30-8 p.m. Rain date is July 22. Later in the week on Wednesday, July 23, the Rutkowski Family Trio (pictured), joined by friends and vocalist Lisa Gary, will perform a repertoire of traditional jazz from 7-8 p.m. The rain date is Thursday, July 24. All concerts in the series are free and take place in the park at 23rd Street and the East River.

 

IMG_1203

Better Than Ezra

Music on the Oval has returned to Stuyvesant Town. All ST/PCV residents and their guests are invited to attend two concerts on Wed., July 23 and Thurs., July 24 at 6 p.m. both evenings. On July 23, Better Than Ezra will perform. Big Wake will open the show. On July 24, Ed Kowalczyk will perform. Sylvana Joyce + The Moment will open.

 

Jon Cleary

Jon Cleary

The Madison Square Park Conservancy presents Mad Sq. Music: Oval Lawn Series, featuring award-winning performers in a range of genres  such as jazz, soul, R&B, funk, folk, world, Americana, and bluegrass.  On July 23 from 7-8:30 p.m. Jon Cleary will perform. Concerts take place on the Oval Lawn of Madison Square Park.

 

Waterside Plaza will conclude its summer concert series, “Music Under the Stars” with a performance by Nu D’lux on July 23 at 7 p.m. There will be a beer and wine bar, with snacks available at the concession stand or hardier fare at the Robbins Nest cafe. Seating is limited. Lawn chairs and blankets are welcome.

For information on even more concerts and other events taking place in the community, see Town & Village’s Around & About page. For information on free events taking place this week throughout the city, see Cutting Corners.

Events in the community this week

The following community and entertainment events are taking place this week.

Gramercy quality of life forum on July 15

City Councilwoman Rosie Mendez

City Councilwoman Rosie Mendez (Photo by Sabina Mollot)

Manhattan Community Board Six and Gramercy Neighborhood Associates are co-hosting a community forum with representatives from NYC agencies, moderated by City Councilmember Rosie Mendez on July 15 from 6 to 8 p.m.
Agencies will include New York County District Attorney’s office, NYPD’s 13th and 17th Precincts, Department of Sanitation, Department of Transportation, Parks Department and Department of Homeless Services.
It will take place in the School of the Future at 127 East 22nd Street between Park Ave and Lexington Avenue. Panelists will address quality of life issues in the Gramercy neighborhood, including homelessness, safety, traffic and sanitation. Residents can submit questions prior to the forum or in written form during the event.
For more information, contact events@gnaonline.org or office@cbsix.org.

 

Lectures, dance lessons, kids’ events at Stuyvesant Square Park

Tango lesson at Stuyvesant Square Park (Photo by Ute Lechmig)

Tango lesson at Stuyvesant Square Park (Photo by Ute Lechmig)

The Stuyvesant Park Neighborhood Association presents the following upcoming events at Stuyvesant Square Park:
Lunch and Learn events take place on Wednesdays and Thursdays. Wednesday events, from 12:15-1 p.m., are hosted by NYU Hospital for Joint Diseases Horticultural Therapy and Integrative Health Programs. July 16: Mind body movement (meditation), July 23: Herbal tea party.
Thursday events, from 1:15-2 p.m. are hosted by Cornell University Cooperative Extension’s Jannie Wolff. July 24: Health and the uses of herbs.
Chair yoga Tuesdays with Birgit Nagele take place on July 15, 22 and 29 from noon-1 p.m. on the northwest lawn.
Tango Sundays with Esmerelda take place from 6-9 p.m. (beginner lessons at 6 p.m.) at the west fountain.
The NYC Parks Department presents “Play Mobile” on July 15 from 11 a.m.-3 p.m.
For updates and additional event information, visit spnanyc.org.

Movies on the Oval

Movies on the Oval has returned with a double-feature most Wednesdays through August 13 for ST/PCV residents and their guests. On July 16, 5 p.m. “The Croods,” 7 p.m. “The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug.”

 

Music Under the Stars

Kaissa

Kaissa

Waterside Plaza’s summer concert series, “Music Under the Stars,” has returned with Wednesday concerts at 7 p.m. each night. There will be a beer and wine bar, with snacks available at the concession stand or hardier fare at the Robbins Nest cafe. Seating is limited on the Plaza. Lawn chairs and blankets are welcome.
July 16, Kaissa will perform. Hailing from the Republic of Cameroon and its vibrant culture, singer Kaissa has become an unmistakable representative of African music. Rain date is July 17.

 

 

July10 David Hershey Webb 2013

David Hershey-Webb and Friends at Stuyvesant Cove Park last year

David Hershey-Webb and friends will return to Stuyvesant Cove Park to perform original folk, country rock and R&B music on Monday, July 14th at 6:30 p.m. The show is part of the free summer concert series presented by The Stuyvesant Cove Park Association. In the event of rain the performance will take place on Tuesday, July 15.

For even more events going on including outdoor concerts, theater, comedy, kids’ events and more see T&V’s Around & About section.

For free events happening throughout the city, see Cutting Corners.

For local fitness events like free yoga in Union Square and qi gong at Waterside, check out T&V’s Health & Fitness listings.

For the latest programming and special events at local houses of worship, there’s also the Religion in the Community listings.

Perv grabbed butts of two women, one in Stuyvesant Oval, one on E. 14th Street

By Sabina Mollot
Police are looking for a bearded creep who grabbed the buttocks of two women as they were walking in the hallways of their buildings, one in Stuyvesant Oval, the other on East 14th Street.

The first incident was on May 18 at around 3 in the morning, when the unknown man grabbed a 24-year-old in her building on East 14th Street, then took off.
Police think the same man struck again on June 15, this time at around 2 a.m., touching a 22-year-old woman’s buttocks at Stuyvesant Oval, before running away. The exact addresses were not specified.

The suspect has been described as being 25-35, 5 ft. 10 ins. tall and weighing 175-200 lbs. His race isn’t known. He was last seen wearing a black sports jacket black dress pants, a light colored dress shirt, with black dress shoes. A surveillance video shows a man with a beard entering a Stuyvesant Town building.

When asked why police waited until July to make the incidents public, a spokesperson for the NYPD’s Deputy Commissioner of Public Information said it may have taken this long to determine that the two complaints were linked.

State Senator Brad Hoylman, in Stuyvesant Town on Friday, distributes fliers about the groping incidents. (Photo by Laura Morrison/Senator Hoylman)

State Senator Brad Hoylman, in Stuyvesant Town on Friday, distributes fliers about the groping incidents. (Photo by Laura Morrison/Senator Hoylman)

Meanwhile, State Senator Brad Hoylman and a couple of volunteers distributed fliers to residents on First Avenue outside of Stuyvesant Town on Friday.  By the time they were done, about 1,000 fliers were handed out. Though a few residents had heard about the groper, most were surprised when he told them, Hoylman said. So far, no fliers have been put up in ST/PCV buildings, but Hoylman said he was told by police at the 13th Precinct that Stuy Town’s Public Safety department would be putting them up.
“Awareness is really a big part of this,” said Hoylman. “Not just in catching the perpetrator, but alerting residents so they can take appropriate precautions, and also showing solidarity with the victims.”

Brian Moriarty, a spokespeson for CWCapital, said, “Public Safety has worked closely with NYPD since the incidents and has provided its full cooperation.”

Anyone with information in regards to this incident is asked to call Crime stoppers at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477) or visit http://www.nypdcrimestoppers.com. All calls are strictly confidential.

Note: The post has been updated to include statements from Senator Hoylman and CWCapital.

 

Letters to the Editor, July 3

July3 Toon Ice cream

Stuyvesant Town is not a public park

To whom it may concern:
I am happy to see the improvements to the grounds of PCVST over the last couple of years including the landscaping, amenities, security and such. I am glad that some of my hard earned money is going to good use. I enjoy the Movies on the Oval, the live concerts and the pure enjoyment of sitting in the Oval and reading a book.
My only concern is why are the amenities that I pay for shared… with many non-tenants.
On any given day there are many non-residents using the Oval as if this was a public park. They treat it like a public park leaving garbage behind and letting kids run around with no regard to people trying to relax. If they want a public park there are many in the city that are supported by their tax dollars. The Oval is supported by the rent paying residents! Not people who come here to walk their dogs and throw parties on the lawn.
The last time I wrote a letter regarding a similar problem, that being the amount of outsiders using our playgrounds, action was taken the day after it was published in the Town & Village newspaper. Staff checks resident cards making sure that the people using our playgrounds, Oval Café, Oval Study and Oval Kids are residents. Why can’t the same be done on the Oval lawn?
I look forward to your response.
Respectfully,
Tom Issing, ST

Nice lip service on rent freeze

If our mayor hand-picked five people to appoint to the Rent Guidelines Board and the RGB vote was 5 to 4 in favor of a rent increase, there is no doubt in my mind that the mayor, despite his so-called plea for a rent freeze, gave the okay to the landlords grab for another rent hike.
Are we ever going to get leaders who mean what they say or has “Truth” and “Justice” been scratched from “Truth, Justice and the American Way?” Superman, where are you?
John Cappelletti,
Sty Town
(in honor of dogs who pee on the “No Dogs” signs)

 

Who’s serving on TA committees?

To the editor,
It seems like almost a daily occurrence that we hear from the Tenants Association on topics such as two-piece bathing suits, dogs, MCIs and rent freezes.
These usually come from press releases, newspaper articles, rallies and meetings, but often only repeating what our electeds have already said. Who are the directors and what do they do? The TA website lists 15 directors including two presidents emeritus.
We learned recently from the candidates’ bio that the TA has many committees. These include the executive, legal and conversion committees in addition to a special committee on elections. One of this year’s candidates was the chair of the special election committee.
With our future once again up in the air, maybe it is time the TA exchange a press release for some real information about exactly what all of these committees do, especially the Conversion Committee. They keep asking for our support. But what are we supporting? We need some details.
Name withheld, ST

 

This week in pictures: Kids come out for Easter activities in Stuy Town

By Maria Rocha-Buschel

Stuyvesant Town and Peter Cooper Village families spent a sunny Easter Sunday on the Oval on April 20, hunting for eggs, meeting Peter Cooper Cotton Tail and generally enjoying the good weather.

Brad Kenney, who recently joined CompassRock as the senior director of marketing and communication for Stuyvesant Town and Peter Cooper Village and is a Peter Cooper Village resident himself, used to work for MakerBot, a company that produces 3D printers. He used this previous connection to leave a special surprise in one of the plastic eggs in the egg hunt for the older kids: a small 3D printed squirrel.

Evan, a 9-year-old resident, was the lucky winner and his prize was a bigger version of the squirrel that wouldn’t fit into the plastic eggs.

In addition to the prize egg and the usual candy-filled ones, there were also four musical shaker eggs hidden. Kenney and Valerie Reaper, a musician and event planner for Stuyvesant Town, put on a concert for the kids later in the afternoon, playing classics such as Woody Guthrie, Otis Redding, John Denver and music from the Lion King. The young residents who found the shaker eggs got to participate and there was also a melodica, ukelele and a traditional Chinese instrument they were able to try out. Kenney noted that management’s planning to have more music-related events for families in the future.

(All photos by Maria Rocha-Buschel.)

 

Shade trees chopped down in Oval, management says some trees were overgrown

Workers remove trees from the Oval on Tuesday.

Workers remove trees from the Oval on Tuesday.

By Sabina Mollot

On Tuesday around midday, workers began to cut down trees, specifically every other shade tree surrounding the interior walkway around the Oval, to the horror of some residents passing by.

The resident who snapped this photo reported, “This removed half the shaded areas covering many of the benches used by the tenants. These trees were planted a number of years ago when the tree service organization cut down all 40 of the original, mature and healthy, London Plane trees that shaded the same areas. London Plane trees have a life span of over 200 years. It took a number of years to regain the shade provided to the tenant by the current trees. When I asked the individual supervising the tree service personnel why they were removing the trees his only answer was ‘We were told to.’ It will take many more years for the trees that now remain to grow and possibly provide shade to the benches that the tenants currently utilize.”

This move follows work last month to remove much of the plantings around the Oval, that CW spokesperson Brian Moriarty said was part of ongoing landscaping around the entire property.

Tenants Association Chair Susan Steinberg, meanwhile, said she hoped the area would be replanted soon.

“When Tishman Speyer cut down many mature trees several years ago, we were assured they did so because the trees were beetle-infested or dying (whether one believes it or not is another story),” she said. “I would hope that is the case now rather than a sheer landscaping decision. Some of the trees in our community must be more than 65 years old and are treasures.  Moreover, they have taken out what was an absolutely beautiful and lush arrangement of plants and bushes around the perimeter of the Oval, leaving us with barren earth. If they don’t plan on replanting the area with an arrangement equally breathtaking, shame on them.”

A spokesperson for CWCapital did not respond to a request for an explanation by T&V’s print deadline on Wednesday.

However, on Friday afternoon, in one of CompassRock’s emailed newsletters, management discussed the ongoing landscaping work. One of the goals, apparently, is to remove trees that are “overgrown” as well to correct landscaping work done during Tishman Speyer’s ownership which eventually resulted in hundreds of newly planted trees dying or having to be removed from the grounds.

On the recent work in Oval crescent-shaped flowerbeds, in which plantings were stripped, CompassRock said, “This work is part of a property-wide landscaping stabilization program currently in progress, with the goal of establishing a landscape environment which will thrive for years to come. This requires the correction of programs undertaken by prior ownership, which did not ensure adequate care or space for plants to grow, including many instances of tree, shrub and flower plantings in inappropriate soil and sunlight conditions.”

Management also said the landscaping renovation includes “the transplant of trees and shrubs to other locations in the property; removal of several overgrown trees and plants; remediation of the soil; and improvements to the existing irrigation and electrical infrastructure embedded in the crescents. The new tree species being planted in the crescent beds will be lower in height and density, allowing the trees the space they need to prosper, as well as increasing  visibility into the Oval for both passers-by and security. When completed, the gardens will have a cleaner look and a new, lush ground with perennials to add color. The final plantings will be completed in the coming three weeks and new fencing will be established to protect the area and keep it healthy.”

Letters to the Editor, June 13

Tell Governor Cuomo: No fracking in NY

Hydraulic fracturing is a process that forces millions of gallons of fresh water, sand, and toxic chemicals, under high pressure, into shale rock to release natural gas.

Recently, Wendy Byrne, Kathy Reynolds, Anne Lazarus and I, all Stuyvesant Town residents, distributed information about fracking and gathered signatures on a petition to Governor Cuomo to ban the process in New York State.

If the present moratorium is removed, our water, land and air can become polluted as has happened in other states where fracking is used. Documentaries like “Gasland,” “Gasland II,” “Split Estate” and others reveal what the oil and gas industry has tried to cover up by refusing to name the chemicals in the toxic mix that Halliburton and others got exempt from the Clean Air and Clean Water Acts in 2005. Once the chemicals such as benzene get into the water, no filtering mechanism can get them out. The industry claims that if done correctly there is no danger of leaking chemicals or explosions. We know that accidents happen and with budget crunches there are not enough inspectors in New York State to monitor the drilling operations.

The bottom line is that natural gas (methane) is a fossil fuel affecting climate changes that trigger storms like Hurricane Sandy. Scientists and the United Nations Environment Program are urging us to develop renewable energy from the sun, wind, tidal water and geothermal sources and train people for these green jobs.

We should not leave our children and grandchildren a polluted planet but make every effort to restore the natural world and save it from those who seek its resources to enrich themselves.

Please consider joining us in Albany on Monday, June 17, where a demonstration will take place from 1 to 3 p.m. on the mall. Register for the bus from New York City here. Round trip tickets are $25 and available on line. Some full financial subsidies are available. Bus leaves at 8 a.m. from 460 8th Avenue (34th St. and 8th Avenue) and returns to New York City by 6 p.m.

Joy Garland, ST

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