Saturday, October 29, 2011

Occupy Wall Street supporters target REBNY over parks access

Occupy Wall Street supporters target REBNY over parks access
The real estate association took some heat on Twitter, Facebook
October 21, 2011 12:15AM

By Miranda Neubauer

Supporters of the Occupy Wall Street movement have now begun targeting the Real Estate Board of New York on social media and then in turn by phone, following news reports that REBNY seeks to submit a proposal to the city limiting the public access hours of privately owned public parks.

As has been widely reported, protesters affiliated with the Occupy Wall Street movement have for several weeks been camped out in Lower Manhattan's Zuccotti Park, which is owned by Brookfield Properties but is open to the public around the clock. Brookfield has expressed some misgivings about the presence of the protesters, and last week the commercial property owner, manager and developer called off a planned clean-up operation of the park scheduled for sanitary purposes at the last moment, even as the protesters began taking the clean-up into their own hands and vowed to resist any attempt at their removal.

In response to an opinion article in today's New York Times by Jerold Kayden, a professor of urban planning at Harvard University, on the legal gray area of such privately owned public spaces, and the news reports of REBNY's plans, a Twitter user called @OccupyMyCat this morning posted, "Announcement! It's time to Occupy REBNY, the Real Estate Board of New York!" In a related post, the Twitter feed @OccupyWallStNYC posted "Some #OccupyAdvice 2 concerned citizens: Make sure #RealEstateBoard doesnt [sic] close parks on 'reasonable' use pretext," and encouraged its followers to call REBNY's main number to "tell them not 2 pressure city 2 close parks." That post was shared on Twitter at least 64 times.
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