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Published by: COMMUNITYMEDIA on Jan 13, 2011
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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The community center now beingbuilt on the west side of the BatteryPark City ball fields in the LibertyLuxe/Liberty Green residential com-plex is just a shell. No final deter-mination has been made as to whatprograms the facility will offer when itopens in January 2012.But Asphalt Green, the organiza-tion chosen by the Battery Park CityAuthority to manage the communitycenter, is trying to fill in the blanks byasking the people of Lower Manhattanwhat programming they would like tosee.A few weeks ago, Asphalt Greenposted a survey on its website ask-ing respondents for their interest inactivities that include sports of vari-ous kinds, swimming lessons, cook-ing classes, cultural offerings (dance,theater, writing), holiday and summercamps, media instruction and more.So far, around 200 people havefilled out the survey. It will be posteduntil March, according to ChristinaKlapper, Asphalt Green’s marketingdirector.“It would be unwise of us not tolook at the survey seriously,” said CarolTweedy, Asphalt Green’s executivedirector. “At the same time, wheneveryou do a survey, you have to under-stand the sampling errors that you getwith it. Some people who are likely tobe users will never go near a survey.It’s one piece of important information,but it’s only one.”After the programming line-up hasbeen determined, Asphalt Green willbe able to get a handle on the costsof operation and this will determinehow much it will cost to be a memberof the community center, to use therecreational facilities and to attendclasses there.In October 2009, when the BatteryPark City Authority, which owns the
Downtown Express photo by Milo Hess
Chin chips in
City Council member Margaret Chin tosses a Christmas tree into a wood-chipping machine at last weekend’sMulchFest held at Bowling Green. The event was hosted by the Downtown Alliance and over 240 trees wereturned into mulch.
Community Board 1’s W.T.C. RedevelopmentCommittee met on Mondayto track the deconstructionprogress of 130 LibertyStreet and developmentstatus of the World TradeCenter site.Josh Rosenbloom,the Lower ManhattanDevelopment Corp-oration’s director of cityoperations, told the boardthat, despite past delays,the L.M.D.C. expects toclear 130 Liberty Street,site of the former DeutscheBank building, for futuredevelopment by the end of this month. As of Mondayafternoon, 35 percent of the concrete and support-ing steel had been strippedfrom the second floor.The L.M.D.C. is nowfocused on finishing thewestern and southernperimeter of the site. Workers will haul in heavyequipment next week tocomplete the project. ButPat Moore, a member of the C.B. 1 committee,bemoaned the machinery’sclamor.“It’s early, loud and justawful,” said Moore.Moore said she was spe-cifically referring to a recentSunday when she was awo-ken by construction noise.Rosenbloom replied, “It’snot going to be quiet, butnot louder than a jackham-mer.”Moore, whose bedroomwindow is right abovethe Ladder 10/Engine 10Firehouse, said she wokeup last Monday morningto see construction work-ers removing the scaffolding
Deutsche Bank buildingalmost down
Survey gives public chance for input on center programs
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 page 13 
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 page 15 
JANUARY 12 - 18, 2010
Winter blooms
Snowdrops (“Galanthus nivalis”) are blooming in Battery ParkCity.
Turn to page 12 for the story.
January 12 - 18, 2011
downtown express 
Diving for a blessing, a cross and good luck
Parishioners from St. Nicholas Church,which was demolished during the 9/11attacks, held one of the time-honoredEpiphany rituals in Battery Park this pastSunday. The Blessing of the Waters andcasting of the Holy Cross into New YorkHarbor was conducted after a mass atSaints Helen and Constantine Church inDowntown Brooklyn.
The ritual began with a processionfrom Pier 1 to one of the slips near wherethe Statue of Liberty/Ellis Island ferriesdock. Crosses and religious artifacts werecarried and chants were sung as the priestsand divers boarded an FDNY rescue boat.At the appropriate moment, the swimmerswere told to be ready and the gold cross wasthrown into the water with a tether.The successful diver, George Kantris,hoisted the cross into the air and swam backto the boat. For his efforts, he was rewardedwith a small cross and a personal blessingfrom the priest to ensure good luck for thecoming year. The ceremony concluded withthe release of a white dove.
— Joseph M. Calisi 
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C.B. 1
A schedule of this week’s upcoming CommunityBoard 1 committee meetings is below. Unless otherwisenoted, all committee meetings are held at the boardoffice, located at 49-51 Chambers St., room 709 at6 p.m. The Community Board offices are closed onThursday, November 11 in observance of Veteran’s Day.
ON WED., JAN. 12:
C.B. 1’s Tribeca Committeewill meet.
C.B. 1’s LandmarksCommittee will meet.
ON TUES., JAN. 18:
C.B.1’s Seaport/Civic CenterCommittee will meet.
Gillibrand and Nadler clarifymisinformation
Now that the James R. Zadroga 9/11 Health andCompensation Act has been signed into law, thousandsof people are looking to their local representatives forguidance. On Monday representatives from U.S. Senator
Kirsten Gillibrand
’s office showed up to the CommunityBoard 1 W.T.C. Redevelopment Committee meeting to dis-cuss the bill. Unfortunately, they provided misinformationthat sparked outrage amongst the committee members.A constituent liaison from Gillibrand’s Manhattan officetold the committee members that only first respond-ers would be covered under the portion of the bill thatreopened the Victims Compensation Act. A total of 2.5 bil-lion was allotted so people with 9/11 related illnesses couldbe compensated. But on Monday, the aide from Gillibrand’soffice told the committee that the fund was only for firstresponders.“The information presented at the meeting was notaccurate. The fund is open to anyone who has a legitimateclaim to some sort of World Trade Center related illness,”said
Ilan Kayatsky
, a spokesperson for Congressman
Jerrold Nadler
, one of the bill’s sponsors in the House of Representatives.To clarify any misunderstanding, on Tuesday
, a spokesperson for Senator Gillibrand said, “SenatorGillibrand and her colleagues successfully fought to ensurethat all of the community residents and first responders whosuffer from 9/11-related diseases are eligible for criticalcompensation and health coverage.”
Extra prep this time around
New York City, following the blizzard that brought thecity to a standstill two weeks ago, took extensive measuresto prepare for the latest torrent of snow that hit the areaTuesday night.Meteorologists predicted between five to nine inchesof snow while city officials heightened their projectionsto fourteen inches. The Office of Emergency Managementcautioned New Yorkers against driving during the stormand warned that parked cars in the way of snowploughswould be towed.Mayor
announced on Tuesday that 365 saltspreaders and 1,700 snowplows would be administeredthroughout the City.The Metropolitan Transit Authority sent out extraemployees to protect equipment and clear snow. Trains andbuses are expected to run on a delayed schedule.The Bloomberg administration has faced criticism for itsresponse to the last blizzard. The City Council held a JointOversight Hearing on the City’s response to the last snow-storm, prompting the Bloomberg administration to form a15-Point Action Plan on Tuesday to prevent future problems.Some follies the City Council addressed were its belief that the City failed to declare a snow emergency, ineffi-ciently allocated its resources and poorly communicated theissue to the public.
Read the Archives
downtown express 
January 12 - 18, 2011
Department of Education to decide fateof 26 Broadway and Millennium High
A hearing held last week on the Department of Education’sproposal to move the Richard R. Green High School of Teaching from East 88th Street to 26 Broadway in LowerManhattan might have been pointless. It’s very possible theD.O.E. has already made up its mind.Since the city D.O.E. announced their proposal in the fallto give the open space in the building, which also houses theLower Manhattan Middle School, to Richard R. Green inlieu of a proposal to have Millennium High expand into thebuilding, Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver has launched anold-fashioned advocacy campaign on behalf of his district.But beyond the role of advocate, the Speaker’s opinion couldbe of little influence.“The D.O.E. has stated publicly that their position is tomove Richard R. Green into the space,” said Jason Fink, aspokesperson for Silver. “What we’re trying to do is to getthem to change their mind.”But Fink also noted that Silver has no power when itcomes to the D.O.E.’s position on the matter. On January 19the Panel for Educational Policy will vote on the proposal.At the heart of the debate is the severe school overcrowd-ing issue that has plagued Lower Manhattan for the last twoyears. Education advocates fought to secure 26 Broadwayunder the impetus that it would house new schools for theLower Manhattan population. Millennium High’s proposalto expand into the building would satisfy that criteria; havinga school such as Richard R. Green move in, and relocatingstudents that do not live in Lower Manhattan, would not.At last week’s hearing, Paul Goldstein, a representa-tive from Silver’s office, delivered remarks on behalf of theSpeaker.“Over the past several years, I have led the fight tocombat school overcrowding and create more educationalopportunities for parents and their children in LowerManhattan,” Silver wrote. “One of the great recent successstories Downtown has been Millennium High School, atop-notch educational institution that has attracted manylocal families and played a key role in this neighborhood’srecovery after 9/11. Today, I am asking the Department of Education to allow Millennium to expand into space it leasesat 26 Broadway. School space in Lower Manhattan ought toserve the population of Lower Manhattan and there remainsa pressing need for new classroom space in this neighbor-hood.”Tricia Joyce, who serves on Community Board 1’s Youthand Education Committee, was unhappy with how theD.O.E. handled the hearing. She said parents and studentsfrom Richard R. Green showed up without full knowledgeof the situation.“They had no information about 26 Broadway nor its his-tory and attachment to our community,” said Joyce. “They just know that they’re in a desperate situation and that thisspace is available.”Joyce pointed out that Richard R. Green is facing thesame overcrowding issues as Lower Manhattan and thatwhen the D.O.E. holds such a hearing, it usually ends uppitting two communities and two school bodies against
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