Letter: Spend the BPCA budget surplus on Battery Park

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BPC residents have $126 Million in tax money that should go back into Battery Park City owners and to reduce the monthly building payments.

February 25, 2013 By Barbara IrelandPhoto

The huge budget surplus of cash that the Battery Park City Authority now redirects to  other parts of the city should be reinvested here in Battery Park. The monthly common charge bills people in BPC pay are the highest in the city. This hurts the overall economics of the owner. Some owners can’t sell at market price since the prospective buyers are afraid of the higher monthly fees. Owners are not able to renovate after 25 years of wear and tear when monthly rents are just covering the owners monthly common charge. BPC residents’ budgets are tight so new restaurants and other luxury retailers are reluctant to start a business here when it may not flourish.

The budget surplus of the BPCA could also help develop new commerce (as Goldman  Sachs did for their complex). Currently, there are few new businesses coming to BPC other than the Brookfield Place renovation due to the high costs of commercial leases in the area. Those leases could be subsidized by BPCA in the first 5 years of business using the budget surplus we generate.

Another bank and a high end health club in south BPC would be nice. Food carts and Food trucks (the brainchild of ex-BPCA CEO Gayle Horwitz) that take money out of the area and pollute the air are not the answer.

The budget surplus could also be spent on a BPCA green initiative. Older buildings need newer heating gas/windows/lighting/front doors to become more efficient as a community.

BPCA should also become a leader in developing a “clean and green” community culture in the neighborhood. BPCA could involve the shop owners, schools and the summer programs to get families involved as a community.

Also on my mind: Community Culture seems absent in the area when:

  1. Pet owners allow their dogs to relieve themselves on ever doorway and building.
  2. Parent and children ride scooters, skateboards, and bikes fast down the middle of the sideway and then they don’t stop but ride directly through lobby.
  3. The walkway of the esplanade is a dangerous place for everyone as scooters, skateboards, and bikes ride fast ringing bells to clear the way.
  4. Weekend walkathons bring noise and water bottle trash to the area. They don’t stop to buy anything. Is BPCA collecting a permit fee or is this going to NYC or does the park workers just get more work?
  5. South End Ave is devoid of cross walks – why are the cross walk not lined for pedestrian safety?
  6. The esplanade WFC bike path markings are in the center of the walkway where the strollers and kids are walking – The bike riders should dismount and walk their bikes –  like they do in Hudson River Park just North of us
  7. BPCA could use the BatteryPark.TV, the five building management companies property broadcast system, or their own website blog to communicate timely information that affect us all.
  8. Broken down stands for free publications are messy any collect graffiti and trash. BPCA should install Newspaper boxes featuring a set number of 4 – 6 boxes in one stand that are keep uniform and clean like they have in other area of the city. Near the bus stops one every three blocks on alternate sides of the street .
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One Response to Letter: Spend the BPCA budget surplus on Battery Park

  1. Judith says:

    Excellent points. It’s ironic that the BPCA negotiated the terms of the Asphalt Green contract to make it less onerous to them, but yet the insanely high common charges of BPC condos continue to destroy their property value. Moreover, the cost of living here is higher since local merchants have to pass along the cost of their higher rents. Consequently, residents face a double whammy!

    A recent NYT’s article in the real estate section addressed this very issue. A couple looking at apartments to buy decided against BPC because of the high common charges due to the land lease.
    “Thinking they might like to live in a new building near the water, they visited Battery Park City, where a doorman referred them to Heather Stein, an agent at Brown Harris Stevens who is active with downtown listings.
    But they decided against the area after learning that the buildings are on land leased from the Battery Park City Authority, which meant lower sales prices but higher monthly charges.”


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