Council Delivers $15.5 Million for Flushing Meadows

Monday, October 21, 2013

The New York City Council voted on October 9 to approve a special permit necessary to develop the Mets’ Citi Field parking lot in Queens. The agreement includes a commitment from the Queens Development Group, a partnership between Sterling Equities and The Related Companies, of $15.5 million – $8 million for capital improvements and $300,000 annually for 25 years for park maintenance.

Combined with funding that the United States Tennis Association agreed to provide in July, more than $25 million has now been secured for the long-term improvement and maintenance of Flushing Meadows Corona Park (FMCP), including seed money for a new non-profit Alliance that will be dedicated to the stewardship of the 897-acre park. NY4P worked particularly hard to ensure that the partnership would invest in the park over time, not just provide a one-time payment.

The combined commitment of $550,000 annually to augment – not supplant – the Parks Department’s budget for FMCP will have a game-changing impact on this historically underfunded park.  It will go a long way toward bringing the park from its current sub-par condition up to the nationally recognized standard for park upkeep.

Over the past year, Council Member Julissa Ferreras has made the park, and its users, a top priority in her negotiations with those seeking to develop in or near the park. NY4P is grateful to her for her leadership and stalwart commitment to her community and its greatest open space resource.

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