Mayor de Blasio needs to change his plan for Holmes Towers infill development or face legal action

birds eye view of Holmes Towers I am calling on Mayor Bill de Blasio to scrap his plan to proceed with the Holmes Towers infill development on First Avenue and 97th Street without going through the Uniform Land Use Review Process (ULURP). There are many things wrong with the Mayor’s proposal, all of which can be rectified through robust public review. Everybody knows that I’m always supportive of efforts to increase affordable housing, but I have… Read more

What is urban policy now? Join me for my 2019 State of the Borough event

Gale talking at podium for State of Borough 2016 There are still tickets available to my State of the Borough event at 2 pm this Sunday at NYU’s Skirball Center! The event will focus on present-day urban policy, featuring a panel discussion with an expert group of guests. Can’t make it? The event will be live-streamed by the Manhattan News Network and posted on my Facebook page. You can also follow along on Twitter using the hashtag #SOTB2019 and #UrbanPolicyNow

Where would you cut the city budget?

news paper article with de Blasio on budget cuts Mayor de Blasio released his preliminary Fiscal Year 2020 budget last week, which revealed a nearly $1 billion shortfall in tax revenue. So the city faces difficult choices about what to preserve and what to cut; but I want to hear about your budget priorities. Each year, my office conducts an analysis of the Mayor’s budget and solicits input from Manhattanites. We will hold a public hearing on the proposal… Read more

Schools need a broadband “czar” to ensure better public school wifi; new report from my office shows wide variance across 70 campuses

Pubic school building in sunlight Even as New York City’s technology sector grows (Amazon HQ2 notwithstanding), a survey of Manhattan public schools by my office shows that city students are lagging behind in the most basic tech currency: broadband wifi access. My staff and interns surveyed a sample of multi-school “campuses” across the borough and conducted measurements of wifi upload and download speeds at three points during the school day: 20 minutes before classes start,… Read more

An open letter to the Soho/Noho Community

Soho street on a beautiful day Borough President Gale A. Brewer, Department of City Planning, and Council Member Margaret Chin would like to thank everyone who attended the first public meeting of the SoHo/NoHo Planning Process on Wednesday, February 6, 2019. We apologize for being unprepared for the tremendous turnout—over 250 people attended. We’ll do better for the next meeting in February. But because of that turnout, we obtained a significant amount of feedback on where… Read more

Collecting data on nutrition education in NYC schools

rally full of people for food education in nyc schools Healthy habits start young, and eating better helps students do better in the classroom now, and succeed in the future. But according to research from the Tisch Center at Columbia University, 44% of New York City public schools lack programming lessons on nutrition education. That’s why Council Member Mark Treyger and I introduced legislation that would require the Department of Education to collect data and report on what students are… Read more