India & Java St. Cleanup – A Personal Request

by Barbara McGlamery on

Photo by Barbara McGlamery

Chain link fence, broken down construction areas and over grown grass. That’s what greets you at the India St. Pier. Of course, there is also the stunning view of the City, which must be where everyone’s attention is, because if they looked around the pier they would not be thinking, “What a lovely spot.

Next door, the park on Java St. is also in desperate need for some love. Who is responsible for upkeep on this property? Why does it look abandoned and neglected? How can we get it fixed up or at least cleaned up? To find out, I asked a person active in the community’s open space, my husband, Adam. I cornered him in the dining room.

“The developer,” was his curt answer. “Call Steve Levin, your City Councilman.”

I called Steve and talked to Rami Metal (Levin’s community liaison), who explained who was responsible for what and gave me the name of the developer, Jonathan Bernstein. Then I wrote my neighbor, Sarah, chair-person of the Friends of India Street group and asked if she knew how to contact the developer. She was more than happy to help draft an email to him with some of the pictures you see below.

To his credit, the developer responded immediately, saying he’d “look into it.” Let’s give him the benefit of the doubt and hope he can find someone with a lawn mower and a hammer.

Photo by Barbara McGlamery

Photo by Barbara McGlamery

Photo by Barbara McGlamery

Java St. Cleanup
With the India St. property and pier cleanup addressed, what about the park on Java? The Open Space Alliance (OSA) is responsible for the park on Java St. and the planter boxes near the pier, so I called Kurt Cavanaugh, OSA Associate Director. He said he would have OSA’s maintenance guy come over and clean up in the next few days. I understand it’s a temporary, pop-up park, but I think the community deserves a rat-free environment, so I’m glad to see OSA moving on this.

Back to the Pier
There’s still the matter of getting another fence and sprucing up the pier. More than likely that won’t happen until the developer actually develops something on that spot, which could take years. I wonder though, if we can get those beds planted before then. Anyone feel like doing some guerilla gardening?

Note: Barbara is on the board of GWAPP but mostly limits herself to helping out with publicity and website issues. This is her first real attempt at on-the-ground community advocacy. We’ll all be watching (and cheering her on) to see if her slew of phone calls and emails actually produce any change.

Barbara McGlamery

Barbara McGlamery

Barbara has been a Greenpoint resident since 1997. Originally from Florida, she has been involved in community activities since the age of seven, selling girl scout cookies and putting on variety shows for the local nursing homes. She was involved with the first power plant fight against Con Edison, and has served as GWAPP’s secretary since 2000. Currently she works in web development at Martha Stewart and is the host of a tech-themed radio show, “Tech Trends,” for Martha Stewart Radio. She is mother to two hyperactive and brilliant little boys, Lorenzo and Ezra, and enjoys cooking, reading and going to the park!

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