In a win for nearby residents and lovers of green space, the city Tuesday bought a seven-acre lot along the Williamsburg-Greenpoint waterfront for $53 million, to be used for the expansion of the long-promised Bushwick Inlet Park.
Park supporters were “not surprised” by the transaction, but nonetheless are “very happy and grateful that this parcel is in the hands of the City,” activist group Friends of Bushwick Inlet Park Friends Co-chair Steve Chesler told Brownstoner.
The deal hit public records Wednesday.
The site at 1 North 12th Street, formerly owned by the Bayside Fuel Oil Depot, constitutes a step forward in the city’s fulfillment of its promise to build a 28-acre park in exchange for the 2005 rezoning of Williamsburg and Greenpoint.
As a part of the controversial rezoning, the city promised locals a large public park would be created to compensate for the forthcoming tall, dense towers.
More than a decade later, however, only a soccer field and green-roofed community building make up Bushwick Inlet Park, despite extensive development throughout the community. The property at 1 North 12th Street is the fourth to be acquired by the city to create the park.
Still, this is by no means the end of the fight for the green space, according to Chesler.
Much of the promised park land remains in private hands. Notably, the large CitiStorage property — the center of the promised park — is for sale, following a devastating fire. But the de Blasio administration has said it has no intentions to acquire the property because it is too expensive. It will not allow it to be rezoned for housing, either, however.
Nonetheless, Friends of Bushwick Inlet Park hold out hope. “The community expects the City to ride the momentum of now having acquired the Bayside land and acquire the CitiStorage property,” according to Chesler.
Officials did not respond to Brownstoner’s requests for comment on the sale.
— Bushwick Inlet Park (@bushwickinlet) March 10, 2016