If there's one thing everyone can agree on, it's that New York City needs more high-rises. But there's one thing stopping real-estate behemoth Related Companies from building 49 stories of delicious commercial and residential real estate: Ruppert Park playground. According to the Post, Related purchased the park in 1983 for $10 million, and in exchange for maintaining the park received tax breaks for its nearby properties. Related had to take care of the park until 2008 per the contract, but continued maintaining it until last month. Now it's padlocked, preventing any childish joy from poisoning a potential building site.
"I feel as if we were being held hostage," a 36-year-old father tells the paper. His 5-year-old son has grown up using the playground. "Basically, it's selfishness and greed that rules the day." Related has met with the city, asking for more tax breaks to return the park to the city, but according to councilmember Dan Garodnick, "there was no interest."
Geoffrey Croft of NYC Park Advocates says, "This administration has the chance to reverse an irresponsible deal for a desperately needed park that never should have been sold in the first place." Has Related thought about pimping out the park as Doritos Square? Even if it doesn't work out, these kids can always take the train to
The Front Lawn of A Luxury Complex Brooklyn Bridge Park.