Press Release From DKAL 8-10-10
DUTCH KILLS ADVOCACY LEAGUE: THE LEAGUE
PO BOX 8070 LONG ISLAND CITY NY 11101
August 10, 2010 Press Release
We are writing to you about the Dutch Kills millstones, objects that have been taken care of, and have been watched over by our community, for more than 350 years. They are now, according to City Planning and EDC, being slipped out of our community against our wishes. Still seething from the recent bungled rezoning by City Planning, many believe that the same parties are now involved in this latest outrage.
When the millstones disappeared into a Queens Plaza construction site last fall, a town hall meeting with attendees from around the borough voiced concerns about their safety. Although invited, no elected officials or representatives of either City Planning or EDC attended the meeting.
Photographs throughout the fall and winter showed the community’s concerns well placed for the millstones were dangerously exposed with construction debris piled around them. Behind fencing designed to conceal, one was moved. An outpouring of outrage finally forced EDC to take some cosmetic steps. A sign was put up.
A few weeks ago, during a meeting to defuse growing anger, City Planning and EDC made public their intention to remove the stones from the community. Called “fragile” in the fall, City Planning now termed them “robust.” Later, an EDC report described their plans. The stones would be displayed in an area with one standing upright, to “economize on space.” An EDC spokesman said their library transfer was in “advanced discussions.”
Upon hearing that the worse rumors were confirmed, questions were raised. Was this an appropriate use for the library, particularly in light of the limited hours and threats in funding? Why were alternative proposals ignored, as a museum like setting in the community where they could be studied and put on display?
To avert a potential public relations disaster for the Queens Borough Public Library, we call for an immediate halt to EDC’s plans. We want a public examination to see if the Queens Plaza renovation does not violate federal and state guidelines. Considering the track record of both City Planning, and EDC in managing our community’s zoning and the millstones, we want to hear other voices with alternative solutions.
We want our elected officials to show up – in person – at a town hall meeting. The Dutch Kills Advocacy League invites you to Dutch Kills for a chat.