Residents Rally Against Plan To Reopen Garbage Transfer Station In NYC

NEW YORK (CBS 2) — The City Council is set to approve a $66 billion budget Wednesday, averting firehouse closings and teacher layoffs, but some of the funds are earmarked for re-opening a garbage transfer station in a residential Manhattan neighborhood, Jay Dow reports.

Many Upper East Side residents who live near the Asphalt Green athletic complex stand opposed to any plan to reopen the station, which closed back in 1999. They staged a rally Tuesday night, saying the plan would bring dozens of loud garbage trucks and foul odors to a mixed neighborhood that includes pricy townhouses and a public housing project, 24-hours a day and six days a week.

“Look around ladies and gentlemen and see all of the children we have here,” said resident Rose Bergen. “It’s about the children.”

garbage transfer station Residents Rally Against Plan To Reopen Garbage Transfer Station In NYC

Garbage Transfer Station (credit: CBS 2)

“I just think it’s kind of discriminating more than helping. I don’t think it’s going to help at all,” another resident said.

Mayor Bloomberg included $125 million in funding for the project in the budget.

“Those trucks would cut right through a public park and straight through the heart of a residential community,” said Councilman Dan Gorodnick.

Supporters of the transfer station said green technology will soften the environmental impact on the neighborhood.

“They’ll be state-of-the-art facilities compared to what we have behind us,” said Eddie Bautista of the NYC Environmental Justice Alliance. “In order for us to have a fair and just city, everybody has to step up to the plate. We all have skin in the game, including the Upper East Side.”

Should the garbage transfer station open again? Is this NIMBYism? Sound off in our comments section below…

Comments

One Comment

  1. frances says:

    3 city blocks long, 10 stories high — that’s one heck of a projection into the water, along a part of the East River Walkway that is beautiful and much used. 2 b locks away from Carl Schurz Park, the only good-sized park along the East River above Houston Street and the only park, period, above 28th St. This is Yorkville, not the posh Upper E. Side, a neighborhood with more schools, churches and programs for children, families and the elderly than any other neighborhood per square foot. And less than 100 feet away from the Isaacs Holmes public housing residents, where Mayor Bloomberg cared enough about their health to bring a farmer’s market with fresh every summer. That was the right hand. The left one is bringing rats, garbage trucks, poisonous chemicals in the air and water. Will the real Mayor Bloomrberg ever stand up?

  2. serene379 says:

    It is absoutely disturbing that the “featured comment” that CBS chose to highlight is one that evidences reverse racism, classism and bigotry. Garbage dumps do not belong an ANY residential neighborhood in the 5 boroughs. Putting a garbage dump in this particular residential neighborhood is not “environmental justice,” but environmental revenge. It is shocking that the Mayor, Council Member Quinn, and “James Power” (and others like “James”) would so blithely and easily sacrifice the health and safety of thousands of residents, including children, low income families and the elderly, and urge neighborhood residents to “accept the inevitable” (isn’t that how rapists view their victims, “James”?) when logical, feasible andviable alternative industrial locations for this garbage dump exist IN MANHATTAN!?!

  3. Ron says:

    Mayor Bloomberg won’t let me smoke in city park because of the affecct it will have on other, but he open a garbage transfers station right to next to a park where thousand of kids from all over the city come to engage ion both organized sports,summer day camps and year round park activities. It does just not make sens and shows a lack of humanity.

  4. S@Yorkville says:

    This “comment” from “lydia” which grafts unintelligible and disturbing nonsense unto my words from a previous comment is an interesting way to try to discredit those who are trying to stop the irresponsible and short-sighted placement of a waste transfer station in their residential neighborhood. It’s a sick tactic that one would expect from people who can’t offer a rational defense of their views.

    1. KPMc says:

      uhhh… no.. it’s just spam that he/she leaves in every article. Don’t read too much into it as it really has nothing to do with you.

  5. Cassidy says:

    It seems as though many are missing the long-range picture, here. If this precedent is set and this transfer station is built so close to this thickly-populated residential area, then the next time the city wants to build a waste transfer station, sewage treatment plant, etc., in another residential neighborhood, it will be much harder to fight against that project. We need to protect everyone who lives in this city and make sure no facility such as this is ever build in any residential neighborhood.

    1. S@Yorkville says:

      Absolutely! And Department of Sanitation rules prohibit building new transfer stations within 400 feet of residential buildings, parks, etc. Why? Because they know it’s not the right thing to do. Period. Yes, people will say the E91 St. MTS grandfathered in. But there’s nothing to grandfather in, they’re tearing an old defunct station down to build a new much bigger one — so it’s new construction. Furthermore, do we really want to grandfather in bad policy from the 20th century as a basis for building a smarter, greener NY?

      There are surely other options for Manhattan that don’t violate the Sanitation Dept.’s own rules, which are designed to protect residential neighborhoods regardless of where they are..

  6. FGioia says:

    Wow, such angry foolish people! Take a walk up to East 91st street and see for yourself how white and snobbish you think it is- ITS IS RIGHT NEXT TO A PUBLIC HOUSING PROJECT WITH MOSTLY BLACK RESIDENTS! You are all fools to believe the Mayor’s bu!!$hit. Asphalt Green provides FREE SWIM INSTRUCTION TO CHILDREN FROM THE EAST HARLEM SCHOOLS.
    This is not Madison Avenue, people. We are not rich, white people- you’re just all a bunch of idiots listening to Bloomberg and Quinn’s garbage.

    1. fgioia says:

      and even if it were madison or fifth or park avenue, it wouldn’t matter, its not right for any person or child.

  7. Ana says:

    Seven days a week children will play immediately adjacent to this dump with its cue of garbage trucks waiting to dump.They will play with their mouths open breathing in the garbage from the cue of trucks waiting to dump! There children are All Colors and Backgrounds as Asphalt Green has a large outreach. In addition there is a low income housing community surrounding Asphalt Green. TAKE THE REVERSE RACISTS STATEMENTS OUT OF THIS ISSUE! YORK.
    VILLE IS A MIXED INCOME RESIDENTIAL AREA. What will this do to decrease Asthma in urban kids!
    THE OTHER SITES ARE NOT RESIDENTIAL!

    1. Michael H. says:

      Queue.

      If you’re going to pretend to be British, at least spell the bloody word right.

  8. Nick says:

    They are right. There should be no garbage facilities. No garbage collection. We don’t need to waste taxpayers’ dollars in that place at all. We don’t need to provide garbage service where it’s not wanted. They can handle all their garbage by their stinking selves.

  9. JIM says:

    IT APPEARS THAT THE STATION IS OUT ON THE WATER, I SEE NO BUILDINGS NEXT TO IT SO GO AHEAD.

    1. Yorkie says:

      and how do the trucks get to the station in the water–by driving through a children’s park and playing field. Brought to you by the same folks that are increasing class size, closing pre-k’s and saying that you should not to worry about it.

  10. Diana says:

    The facility already exists, right?- and it’s been renovated to be state-of-the-art green? Plus it’s extremely close to the source of the garbage? What’s the alternative? Removing the facility? Spending the time and money to build another one somewhere else? generating more pollution by trucking garbage further? I say – if it’s a green alternative, give it a chance. And my daughter and I have both played at the Asphalt Green field, so I’m not a totally disinterested citizen.

    1. concernedparent says:

      The plan is to invest 125 MILLION DOLLARS to build a NEW facility while they plan to cut educational budgets and close firehouses.

    2. Gregg says:

      There is nothing “green” about this Green Alternative project when it comes to 800 or more air-polluting, congestion-creating garbage trucks per day, 24/6,converging and queuing up in line right next to a recreational area where tens of thousands of children play each year. This ill-conceived and politically motivated project should not be built in ANY residential neighborhood, period!

  11. Jane On87thSt says:

    Why would Mayor Bloomberg care about the stench from the transfer station? After all, he doesn’t live anywhere near Gracie Mansion or Asphalt Green or Carl Schurz Park. Does he have any idea what a haven they are for people from all over the city? Of course not. Mayor Bloomberg is safe in his own expensive townhouse where I wonder if ever even sees garbage. Remember, we will have a new mayor in the not-to-distant future, and if he/she adheres to tradition and takes up residence at Gracie Mansion, he/she might care very much about the stench and noise from the transfer station. Don’t ruin it for the youth who play at Asphalt Green or the parents who take their kids to play in the park, or the thousands of residents who just live in the neighborhood. I admit, I don’t know what the alternative is and, yes, you can interpret my comments as NIMBY. But, really, this a bad idea, folks. I’m sure the smart and creative people who work for the city can come up with a better alternative.

  12. Mayr Blomberg says:

    ‘Densely populated neighborhood’. Apparently, the snooty upper-east-siders – as densely populated at they are – feel they don’t generate any garbage. They would rather have it trucked to Queens, Staten Island or out of state – anywhere they don’t live; and have others exposed to the truck fumes & noise & stink that they themselves generate.

    If you don’t like garbage, move upstate and burn your own. Then you won’t have to deal with this ‘horror’.

    1. fgioia says:

      Wow, such angry foolish people! Take a walk up to East 91st street and see for yourself how white and snobbish you think it is- ITS IS RIGHT NEXT TO A PUBLIC HOUSING PROJECT WITH MOSTLY BLACK RESIDENTS! You are all fools to believe the Mayor’s bu!!$hit. Asphalt Green provides FREE SWIM INSTRUCTION TO CHILDREN FROM THE EAST HARLEM SCHOOLS.
      This is not Madison Avenue, people, and even if it were. Its not right for anyone. We are not rich, white people- you’re just all a bunch of idiots listening to Bloomberg and Quinn’s garbage.

  13. john brim says:

    This is idiotic. Asphalt Green is a model public-private effort to provide the only play space in the entire neighborhood. It is heavily used, day and night all year round.. To have dozens of idling garbage trucks on two sides of the park at all hours of the day and night makes no sense whatever. This is purely a vote-getting stunt by calculating politicians at the expense of neighborhood children. To then brand legitimate opposition as “environmental racism” is the height of cynical politics. The mayor’s stance is outrageous.

  14. James Power says:

    I don’t hear these people complaining about our children in the Bronx when they started dumping trucks on Lincoln Avenue.

    How about you Upper East Siders take your part, share in our city’s burden and accept the inevitable with class and dignity. Not with the snobbish attitude you guys have.

    1. Susan smith says:

      No problem putting it in Manhattan- just not in a park where children play. Put it in a commercial area in all the boroughs. This is not about snobbery but health and saftey.

    2. S@Yorkville says:

      Maybe it’s because we’re not aware of the specifics of your neighborhood. And don’t presume to know, as other people seem to about our neighborhood. The consistent mischaracterization of a small northeastern bit of the Upper East Side known as Yorkville is astounding. And it reveals a level of resentment fueled by ignorance and bigotry.

      The fact is: If there’s a garbage dump within 400 feet of a residential district in your neighborhood, that is wrong. And it should be addressed. But it shouldn’t be addressed by committing more wrongs. No NYC politician should allow these dumps to be located in any place that is not industrial/commercial — in any borough. Period.

      It also doesn’t help a city if it continues to develop of what seems to be every inch of land. Any city or town needs to have room, where people don’t live, set aside to handle infrastructure needed to support it, including dealing with garbage. If, by this issue, everyone is saying that waste transfer stations now have to be in residential neighborhoods, infrastructure has not been been properly thought out by our city leaders.

    3. fgioia says:

      Wow, such angry foolish people! Take a walk up to East 91st street and see for yourself how white and snobbish you think it is- ITS IS RIGHT NEXT TO A PUBLIC HOUSING PROJECT WITH MOSTLY BLACK RESIDENTS! You are all fools to believe the Mayor’s bu!!$hit. Asphalt Green provides FREE SWIM INSTRUCTION TO CHILDREN FROM THE EAST HARLEM SCHOOLS.
      This is not Madison Avenue, people, and even if it were, its not right for anyone. We are not rich, white people- you’re just all a bunch of idiots listening to Bloomberg and Quinn’s garbage.

    4. Elissa says:

      James,

      Please see my reply to Carol Smith – I wasn’t here to protest your MTS, but you’d better believe that if it’s in a residential neighborhood in the Bronx, I would support efforts to close it. And by the way, not only am I against the 91st Street MTS (which is in my backyard) but I am vehemently opposed to the one I just learned is being proposed for Queens. It would draw wild birds into the flight path of planes arriving at and departing from LaGuardia Airport. This administration seems determined to recklessly imperil people all across the city – beginning in your neighborhood in the Bronx and extending to Manhattan and Queens. It’s absurd and worthy of outrage.

    5. Melissa says:

      James,

      Please see my reply to Carol Smith (okay, it seems that comment wasn’t published so you can’t look at it and I’m not sure that I have the energy to retype it). I wasn’t here in NYC to protest your MTS, but you’d better believe that if it’s in a residential neighborhood in the Bronx, I would support efforts to close it. And by the way, not only am I against the 91st Street MTS (which is in my backyard) but I am vehemently opposed to the one I just learned is being proposed for Queens. It would draw wild birds into the flight path of planes arriving at and departing from LaGuardia Airport. This administration seems determined to recklessly imperil people all across the city – beginning in your neighborhood in the Bronx and extending to Manhattan and Queens. It’s absurd and worthy of outrage.

    6. Yorkie says:

      How about if none of these facilities are put in residential areas and all of them are in industrial or commercial areas were they belong.

  15. Eric Haviland says:

    Kudos to the Mayor, Christine Quinn, and all those who made this improved facility a reality! Their commitment to the greening of our great City is not to be underestimated. The Mayor will be remember as being one of the greatest in the history of this City. It is gratifying to see the City I grew up in become one of the leading urban dwellings in the world!

    Thank you!

  16. Chris Catan says:

    Lets see… Lets complain we spend too much on transporting garbage and when a solution is made lets complain about that. Maybe the garbage can just disappear like magic!
    When you realize the trucks would run in 3 shift intervals only it’s not that bad.

    NIMBY! fools.

  17. Rhiannon says:

    Completely and totally stupid idea. Another case of our so-called “elected” officials dumping again. Notice that his most exalted imperial majesticness, Micjael and her most benevoIentness Mdme. Christine Quinn live no where near this facility. It stank to the heavens years ago when it was open. “Green” technology will not address the volume of truck traffic or lessen the hazzards of pedestrians, park and Asphalt Green users.

    Yes, I do live in the neighbourhood and YES I do use Asphalt Green and cross York Avenue.
    .

  18. Susan Smith says:

    The idea of running more than 50 diesel trucks an hour 6 days a week 24 hours directly through a heavily used park and a densely populated residential community is insane and dangerous to the health of the community. The ramp for the trucks is also right next to the Asphalt Green which is visited by over 700,000 people a year most of
    whom are children from all 5 boroughs. The diesel exhaust will have a detrimental effect on the unborn, children, and adults with asthma and lung disease not to mention the toxic effect of the poisons required to control the vermin that will come with the garbage.
    Quinn and Bloomberg’s legacies will be tarnished forever. Quinn will never a get a vote from the UES or the projects nearby or from anyone who uses one of NY’s best parks and facilities.

    1. Carol Smith says:

      Susan – as New Yorkers, we must share the burden. I suspect you live in the neighborhood, and would simply will this project to become someone else’s problem.

      If I’m not mistaken, this originally was a refuse transfer station, and it’s therefore appropriate to be used in that capacity again. Is this not simply a case of acute NIMBYism on your part? The Mayor’s legacy will hardly be tarnished by this, and what special conditions entitle you to place yourself above the City’s decision making team?

      1. Elissa says:

        Part I of response:

        Carol,

        This is my seventh time trying to respond to your comment. I hope this finally gets posted. We do NOT want this to become the problem of any other residential neighborhood in ANY borough. These sorts of facilities are appropriate for industrial/commercial areas only. Period, end of story. Ones in highly residential neighborhoods that are in operation should be shut down and no such new ones should be built. We specifically said at yesterday’s rally that we do NOT want this moved to any other residential neighborhood – and the news stations specifically left this out.

        You should know that the old MTS and the facility they propose to have at East 91st Street are totally separate. Since the closure of the old facility, Asphalt Green underwent a transformation and, with it, the entire neighborhood. It’s similar to the transformation the Meatpacking District is beginning to experience thanks to the High Line. And just as it would be absurd to put a garbage dump by the High Line, it is absurd to put one here. Asphalt Green is just as green and it is arguably more valuable because it provides free playing fields to public school children and free swimming lessons to children from East Harlem. That is part of the reason this would tarnish Mayor Bloomberg’s legacy. Asphalt Green and the surrounding neighborhood became green, clean and good under him and now he proposes to undo this.

    2. Tommy says:

      Hi Susan,

      Please see my above comment to Rhiannon. Densely populated areas like your beloved UES with lots of fancy restaurants and high rise apartment houses create a lot of garbage – YOUR garbage – not mine, I live in queens. You deal with your garbage, we don’t send ours to Manhattan do we? Its bad enough half of YOUR sewage is treated in plants in Queens and Brooklyn, stinking up our neighborhoods with your poop. The outer boroughs are NOT a dumping ground for you rich Manhattaners.

      1. S@Yorkville says:

        Tommy,

        As someone who was born and raised in Queens and lived there most of my life and who now lives in residential Yorkville where this giant waste station is to be built, I take umbrage at your Outer Borough resentment and bigotry. Our neighborhood is not the UES of your stereotyping dreams. Yes, there are wealthy people here. But there are also poor, who live in public housing, and a great many working class and middle class, who live in all kinds of buildings, including walk-ups. Which means our neighborhood is an economically diverse one.

        As for “our” garbage. It is not just Manhattan’s garbage. It comes from 50 million tourists a year. It comes from the daily commuters from the suburbs and the outer boroughs. I’ll bet you’d be equally offended if you were told the following: if you come into Manhattan to work or play, bring a Hefty bag with you so you can take the garbage you generate back home.

        A simple Google Street View map search shows that the waste transfer sites the city has chosen are all in industrial/commercial areas — areas far enough away from residential areas. All, except for one — the one planned for Yorkville.

        And that is the crux of the matter. It’s not NIMBY, it’s NIABY — Not In Anyone’s Backyard. No residential area in any borough should have waste station without a suitable buffer zone. Industrial processes belong in industrial areas — even in Manhattan.

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