Rally @ City Hall, Broadway Side
Wed., Oct. 26 @ 3:30pm
We, the people from the Lower East Side and Chinatown, are fighting against displacement and to pass the Chinatown Working Group rezoning to protect our community. Our voices can no longer be ignored. More and more elected officials and candidates support our demands.But Mayor de Blasio is colluding with sellout City Council Member Margaret Chin, continuing to ignore the people’s efforts to bring a “People First” rezoning change. They intend to dismantle our rezoning plan, dividing the community to create conflict among Chinese, Latino, and African American people who live and work in the community. Now, they say only the Chinatown area of the rezoning plan should go first, while the majority Latino and African American Lower East Side should go later, denying us equal protection.
At the same time, the City is dragging out the process of passing our full rezoning plan so that developers like Extell and JDS are able to build high-rise luxury towers and destroy our community. The de Blasio Administration is colluding with developers, as brought to light by recent federal investigation, while the community’s needs for affordable housing are being ignored. We demand:
1. End racism in city planning. Pass community-based “People First” plans like the Chinatown Working Group rezoning plan.
2. End public funding for luxury development, such as 421-a. Instead, use public resources to preserve and build more permanent low-income housing.
3. Stop privatization of public land and assets.
4. Mayor de Blasio and those City elected officials who also collude with developers should step down.
Hundreds of tenants, workers and small businesses joined the demonstration organized by the Coalition to Protect Chinatown and Lower East Side in front of the Community Board 3 meeting, to protest Councilwoman Margaret Chin dividing the community by putting forward only one part of the community rezoning plan while leaving others without protection against luxury development.
Check out some of the press coverage below:
Protestan en contra de la rezonificación en East Village – El Diario De Mexico
Open Statement to NYC Department of City Planning
We are outraged and appalled that our elected and appointed officials are railroading through a plan to split up the Chinatown Working Group (CWG) Rezoning Plan for Chinatown and its Surrounding Areas.
As you know, CWG was created by the city nearly 8 years ago due to the public outcry and dissent against the discriminatory East Village rezoning that left vast areas of the Lower East Side and Chinatown vulnerable to luxury development and displacement. For years, representatives for Council Member Margaret Chin, members of CB3 and specifically CB3’s Land Use, Zoning, Public & Private Housing Committee took part in this city-sponsored vehicle, CWG, to create a 197c rezoning plan with extensive community input and engagement. Throughout this time, the community–Chinese, Latino, African American and Caucasian constituents–have voiced their needs and concerns, and worked together with Community Boards 1, 2 and 3 to reach a comprehensive, inclusive rezoning plan. This plan has been reviewed, voted on and approved by the members of CWG, as well as CB3.
Now, after years of hard work and input by tens of thousands of community members, DCP is dismissing CWG as nothing but advisory. Worst of all, this carving up of our community is continuing a legacy of discrimination and racist exclusion of the Lower East Side, pitting people of color against each other to fight for crumbs. We cannot wait another 8 years, even another 2 years for the city to implement this rezoning plan.
The CB3 committee meeting on Thursday, September 29th in which DCP is presenting a plan for Chinatown is a shameful display of phony democracy. The decision has already been made by the City to split up the full CWG rezoning plan and move forward with a small part of Chinatown. It is shameful of the City to try and buy off a few Chinese while leaving the African American and Latino community and even parts of the Chinese community at the mercy of rampant luxury development. We reject this sham of a democracy. The people of this community have voiced their needs time and again for equal protection. While the CWG rezoning plan has gone through many compromises, we will NOT compromise to be unequal.
We demand DCP and city elected officials immediately move forward with the full CWG rezoning plan, as it was approved by CWG.
The Coalition to Protect Chinatown & the Lower East Side
Thursday, September 29th at 6pm in front of Dr. Sun Yat Sen M.S. 131, 100 Hester Street at Forsyth Street
At this Thursday’s CB3 meeting, Council Member Margaret Chin will support moving forward only one small subarea of the Chinatown Working Group (CWG) Rezoning Plan while leaving vast areas of the waterfront, the Bowery, and private and public housing vulnerable to increased luxury development.
Since the exclusionary 2008 East Village Rezoning Plan, the Lower East Side and Chinatown community has fought for a rezoning plan to provide equal protection for the excluded area in CB3. The CWG Rezoning Plan was a collaboration of over 50 community groups, Community Boards 1, 2, and 3, developers and small proprietors. The plan was approved by CB3, and most recently received attention and support by several candidates for the 65th Assembly District. Despite this, the NYC Department of City Planning is refusing to consider passing the plan as it was created and approved by CWG. To add insult to injury, Council Member Chin is acting as a foot soldier for Mayor de Blasio, claiming to help Chinese by discriminating against African American, Latino and even Chinese of Community District 3.
We demand that Council Member Chin stop discriminating against people of color by further dividing the community and support the CWG plan as a whole.
We demand that Community Board 3 reaffirm its commitment to the full plan
We demand that and Mayor de Blasio adopt the full CWG rezoning plan