For the past couple of weeks, a rumor has swirled among the Occupy Wall Street scene that Brookfield Properties, the company that controls Zuccotti Park, would close the park for three months for "renovations." The rumor most recently popped up on the Twitter feed of Jeff Smith, a member of the Occupy Wall Street media team. "Zuccotti Park's closing in January for 3 months for 'renovations.' Today feels like #OWS' swan song to the park we called Liberty Square," Smith posted on Christmas Day, followed by: "I heard from someone in OWS legal that Brookfield filed the paperwork as back-up plan to evict. Talked to security guards too."
Today a Brookfield spokesperson Melissa Coley got back to us and firmly denied that there was any truth to the rumor. "There is no truth to this whatsoever," Coley said, and added there were no plans to close the park for renovations this year. We followed up with Coley to ask if Brookfield had at any point planned to close the park for lengthy renovations, and have yet to hear back. But it would hardly make sense for Brookfield to close the park now that new rules have made it impossible for any encampment to grow there.
Still, Zuccotti Park remains a potent symbol of the movement's potential, and protesters continue to return to it on a daily basis. The Christmas holiday was no exception, and over the weekend demonstrators held a 24-hour protest, starting with a candlelight protest outside the New York Stock Exchange and continuing with the delivery of a big bag of toys, Christmas carols, and Christmas Mass. Here's video of what you may have missed: