Museum of Natural History’s Plan For New Science Center Moves Forward

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — The American Museum of Natural History‘s $325 million expansion plan is moving ahead over the objections of Upper West Side neighbors.

The Landmarks Preservation Commission approved the museum’s plan to build a new science center and make changes to a nearby park.

Sig Gisler, the former administrator of the Pulitzer Prize, has lived across the street from Teddy Roosevelt Park for 22 years. He heads one of several groups that has been fighting against the proposed project.

“This is where kids learn to ride their little scooters,” Gisler said. “This is where grandmas go with their grandchildren, this is where old folks go to rest their aching bones. As one mother said, ‘This is where my baby learned to walk.'”

He and hundreds of other neighbors succeeded in getting the museum to scale back the footprint of the six-story science center, but Gisler said it’s not enough.

“We still feel that this looming presence of this structure is just too large,” Gisler said. “Too much museum and not enough park.”

Gisler said the fight isn’t over.

The center still faces an environmental review.


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