When Sarah Starr heard her colleague Matthew Weinzierl say he was biking around Brooklyn to find some of the worst dog parks in the city, Starr thought he was joking. But after organizing a roundtable of real estate professionals, she realized they really were finding the worst.
The panelists discussed the rent hikes, the gentrification, and the crowds that block entry points to some of the parks to make room for apartments. Some of the city’s most beautiful parks have become squalid spaces where homeowners put in their trash can and dumpster.
Starr wasn’t surprised. The committee she assembled at Baruch College last month were faced with exactly this problem at a lot of developments they’re handling.
“Burgers and Buds: A Manhattan Snapshot” by Noah Kanter combines photos from RTA, JDW, Rockwell Group, JCDecaux, SOM, Deanna Stegall, Orion Bank, Trainspotting Studios, and David Wistar.
Andrea Lia agrees. The founder of a popular startup, Flatiron Co-op, last year she helped redevelop the dog park behind Silvercup Studios into a bike lane. She says the park is once again a public amenity, and one that can be kept free of politics.
“We lived in Central Park, a neighborhood dominated by families,” she says. “And if there’s nowhere for kids to play, they grow up without that sense of community.”
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