2012-08-31 / Community

Gateway To Host ‘New Vision’ Meeting


In August, locals showing up for a Gateway meeting found instead brochures and representatives who could not answer their concerns. In August, locals showing up for a Gateway meeting found instead brochures and representatives who could not answer their concerns. This one might really turn out to be a meeting rather than a meet and greet.

Officials at the Gateway National Recreation Area have invited Rockaway residents to “help plan Gateway’s future at a General Management Plan Open House.”

That open house will be held at the Ryan Visitor Center (the control tower) at Floyd Bennett Field in Brooklyn from 3 to 7 p.m. on Wednesday, September 12.

“As part of the next phase of developing a General Management Plan, three alternatives, each laying out a different direction for the park, are available for comment and will be discussed at the meeting,” a park spokesperson said.

Some locals are skeptical, however.

In early August, the park service invited people for a similar meeting at Riis Park.

When the people arrived, however, they found a large tent hosted by several park workers who seemed to know little about the plan and simply offered graphic displays of the same alternatives, offering them the chance to fill out comment sheets.

“We were promised a meeting where we could ask questions and get answers, said one youth sports league official at the time. “What we got were nice brochures and a brush-off.”

A number of local sports leagues and arts organizations that have been utilizing the park as a sort of “home field” have recently been hit with high fees and threats that their events were “not appropriate” for a federal park and may be cut altogether.

Park officials say, however, that they are working with those organizations to work out a compromise and urge all those involved with those organizations to come to the September meeting.

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