Category Archives: parks

Farewell, Tupper

Tupper Thomas photo: Windsor Terrace Alliance

Back in the days when Ed Koch was mayor and Gordon Davis headed up NYC Parks & Recreation, we went to work for Betsy Barlow, whom Davis had appointed to the new position of Central Park Administrator.

With unparalleled energy and focus, Barlow transformed a small staff office into the Central Park Conservancy, which today provides a way for the moneyed folks who call Central Park their front lawn to contribute to its restoration and maintenance in return for the City’s commitment that the Conservancy will manage it. Continue reading

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Parks Department Regulates “Expressive Matter”: The Lederman Law?

High Line image by http://www.trainjotting.com

Carol Rinzler, our contact at 250+ Friends of NYC Parks, brings to our attention new Parks & Recreation Department rules that would impose time and place restrictions on artists who wish to display their work — “expressive matter” —  “in or on any property under the jurisdiction of the Department.”

The rules support the 30-year-old private-public partnership deal the City made with the Central Park Conservancy, and subsequently with similar groups, to give them substantial control over revenue production (vending) in major parks. Such control enables them to raise funds to maintain those parks. Artists have skirted any restrictions by asserting their First Amendment rights. The proposed rules would impose limits on this.

Some of the language in the rules suggests that they are aimed specifically at Robert Lederman, an artist whose repeated attempts to display his work on the High Line Esplanade in Chelsea were met with arrest.

More on this and the message we received from 250+ Friends of NYC Parks can be found after the break. The proposed new rules and a notice of the  required April 23rd public hearing can be found here.

Update: NY1 covered this story on March 27. Here‘s the link. Continue reading