FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contacts: Benjamin Shepard – 917.586.7952, firstname.lastname@example.org
Barbara Ross – 917.494.8164
New York, NY (August 10, 2010) – Tuesday, August 10th, starting at 10:00 a.m.,Time’s Up! and other garden supporters will gather across the street from the site of today’s public hearing at Chelsea Recreation Center, 425 West 25th Street, to protest the proposed new rules that if passed would allow gardens to be illegally transferred to development, placing hundreds of gardens at risk of being bulldozed. Hundreds are also expected to testify at the hearing against the new rules. Over 130 gardens have already been destroyed under the Bloomberg Administration. Mayor Bloomberg and Parks Commissioner Adrian Benepe deny the permanent status granted to hundreds of gardens under the 2002 Preservation Agreement that is set to expire on September 17, 2010, even though the City’s 2002 press release clearly states that hundreds of gardens are permanently protected.
“The City is in breach of contract because the 282 community gardens under the 2002 Settlement Agreement are required to be permanently preserved and the proposed new rules violate the agreement by opening them all up for development”, says Susan Howard, long-time gardener. “What part of permanent do Benepe & Bloomberg not understand?”
“The Public Hearing is a sham and useless,” said Ben Shepard, Time’s Up! volunteer. “We don’t need more hearings, we need more gardens. The city needs to support more community gardens and more green space.”
“Green spaces create green job skills, food security, biodiversity protection, oxygen and peaceful places for children of all ages,” said Wendy Brawer, Director, Green Map System and Time’s Up! volunteer. “Any city that wants to address climate change would be thrilled to have the level and diversity of participation that community gardens have generated.”
CLICK HERE for video of community gardens being bulldozed, including the partial list of over 130 gardens destroyed so far under the Bloomberg Administration.
CLICK HERE for City’s 2002 Press Release announcing the Settlement Agreement, including the quote from the Mayor confirming the permanent protection of hundreds of community gardens
Public Hearing for Community Gardens, NYC August 10, 2010