Livable Neighborhoods

Keeping our neighborhoods and communities safe, clean and engaged takes participation from all of us. Working together with area schools, local police precincts, civic and neighborhood groups, and local merchants and businesses we can ensure that all the neighborhoods of the 39th district remain friendly, safe and great places to live.

Statement on New York Methodist Hospital and Preserve Park Slope Settlement

I am pleased that Methodist Hospital and Preserve Park Slope have reached a settlement that enables the expansion project to move forward and responds to community concerns by lowering the height, allowing for more community involvement, and working with my office to address the traffic issues that have been raised by the proposal. The expansion of Methodist Hospital is an important part of preserving quality health care in the neighborhood, especially in the midst of a shifting health care landscape, and I look forward to working with the hospital and the neighborhood to ensure the highest level of care for our residents.

You can read the full text of the settlement here or see press releases summarizing the details on both the New York Methodist Hospital and Preserve Park Slope websites. Read more »

Dark days, and brighter ones

The waning days of 2014 have been dark ones for New York City. The killing of Detectives Rafael Ramos and Wenjian Liu made real the worst imaginable fears for those who put their safety on the line to serve our communities. Reactions to their murders highlighted tensions among New Yorkers – around how we understand the challenges of public safety and policing – and have risked setting us against ourselves.

Just a few weeks earlier, here in the 39th Council District, we lost 14-year-old Mohammad Naiem Uddin in a traffic crash that reminded us that our efforts to improve traffic safety and reduce speeding have not yet done enough.

Still, as the year turns, I remain truly grateful for what we’ve done together. Democracy can be messy, even painful. We don’t all agree on how to understand the problems, and certainly not on the solutions. But I am genuinely glad about what we’ve achieved together in New York City in 2014. While much of the rest of the country is stuck in a place of political polarization, we have moved forward in tangible ways to make lives better for many New Yorkers. Read more »

“Bridging Gowanus” Community Planning Framework Details Shared Values and Planning Recommendations for the Future of the Gowanus Canal Area

“Bridging Gowanus” Community Planning Framework Details Shared Values and Planning Recommendations for the Future of the Gowanus Canal Area

Comprehensive planning framework brings together 300 voices from the Gowanus community. Priorities are investments in sustainable infrastructure, strengthening manufacturing, maintaining the mix of uses, and preserving and creating affordable housing – to be achieved through a pathway for responsible growth, with creative new planning strategies, that makes sure the rules are followed. Read more »

Brooklyn Parole Headquarters Siting and Our Concerns

Recently the New York State Department of Corrections and Community Supervision (DOCCS) announced their decision to relocate their Brooklyn Borough Parole Office from Downtown Brooklyn to 2nd Avenue in Gowanus. Many constituents have written or called my office to express concerns about this siting – and I agree that the lack of transparency and community engagement in the planning for a facility of this scale has been deeply distressing. Read more »

Letter to the Editor: Bagging Plastic

NY Post
08/06/2014

As co-sponsors of the City Council bill to reduce plastic-bag waste, we’d like to correct inaccuracies in “The City Council’s E. Coli Fans,” by Brad Gertsman (PostOpinion, July 31). Read more »

Planning for the future of Gowanus

When we launched the “Bridging Gowanus” community planning process a year ago, we knew we were taking on a big challenge. 

We’ve seen (and smelled) the fetid water after a rainfall.  I was there when it flooded its banks during Hurricane Sandy.  And we knew these toxic waters might seem still compared to asking Brooklynites to debate too-often-polarizing questions about development, density, infrastructure, industry, and housing. 

But deciding not to engage seemed worse.  Should we just wait and let developers make plans of their own (or pretend that they won’t)?  Should we allow hotels, big-box stores, and self-storage facilities (all currently allowed “as-of-right” throughout the Gowanus) overrun the whole area?  Should we miss the opportunity to frame the community’s priorities for the new mayoral administration? Read more »

Bridging Gowanus Second Meeting Thursday

On Thursday, we are holding the second community planning meeting about the future of Gowanus. The meeting is Thursday, March 20 from 6:00 to 9:00 pm in the Wyckoff Gardens Community Center.

Last fall, I joined together with Congresswoman Nydia Velázquez, State Senator Velmanette Montgomery, Assemblywoman Joan Millman, and Council Member Stephen Levin to announce Bridging Gowanus, an inclusive community-driven planning process to develop a long-term vision for a safe, vibrant, and sustainable Gowanus.

Bridging Gowanus is an effort to bring together a wide range of community members to identify broadly-shared goals, discuss different viewpoints, and build consensus around a neighborhood framework for the infrastructure and land use regulations needed in the Gowanus Canal area. Read more »

Elected Officials Call for a Halt to Senior Home Eviction

BROOKLYN, NY – Councilmember Brad Lander, Assemblymember Joan Millman, and Assemblymember James Brennan released the following statement today in response to a plan to close the Prospect Park Residence, an assisted living facility in Park Slope with over 100 elderly residents:

“To throw our elderly neighbors out on the street is cruel, heartless, and unacceptable. The owner, Haysha Deitsch, must withdraw his plan and allow these seniors to stay in their homes.

“There is already a shortage of senior housing in our city—where does he expect them to go? Read more »

Brooklyn Electeds Statement on LICH Settlement

BROOKLYN -- Congresswoman Nydia Velazquez, State Senator Daniel Squadron, Assemblywoman Joan Millman, and City Councilmembers Brad Lander, Steve Levin, and Carlos Menchaca released the following statement in response to the settlement agreement reached today regarding Long Island College Hospital (LICH):

"We've long urged SUNY and the State to agree to a new, more open RFP process for LICH, to make sure our community and all of Brooklyn have the best possible healthcare outcome. Read more »