The ten-year battle waged by Williamsburg and Greenpoint residents for the promised Bushwick Inlet Park is finally over. Mayor De Blasio’s office announced last week that the city has agreed to pay $160 million for the last parcel of land needed to complete the 28-acre park on the Williamsburg waterfront.
Thanks to countless protests over the years and a flat-out refusal from the Friends of Bushwick Inlet Park to back down, Williamsburg and Greenpoint residents will finally be able to enjoy the beautiful waterfront park that was promised ten years ago by the Bloomberg administration.
Calling the purchase a “fair agreement,” Mayor de Blasio said in a press release, “Today is the day we begin turning the full vision of Bushwick Inlet Park into a reality.”
“Our administration keeps its promises,” de Blasio added. “When we commit to build a new park or a new school in a growing community, we deliver.”
The battle for the park goes back to 2005, when Mayor Bloomberg promised to build the green space in exchange for rezoning the waterfront to make way for a barrage of development plans in the area. Ever since that promise, locals have been trying to make the city follow through on the park’s development. However, the final parcel of land, the 11-acre CitiStorage site, has been bitterly contested for years due to feisty negotiations between the city and the owner, Norman Brodsky, about the actual value of the land.
A spokesman for the Friends of Bushwick Inlet Park, Ward Dennis, expressed his relief at the city’s purchase. “We are thrilled that after 11 years, Bushwick Inlet Park is finally whole,” he said. “This park is an important commitment to the health and well-being of the people of Greenpoint and Williamsburg.”
Images via NYC Parks Department