Subject: 7 Meeting/Fiesta/Rally 4/23, 6:30pm, update on sidewalk sleeping
What’s Columbia doing? Have they stopped digging?
Are they starting to build now at 20 or 30 feet instead of digging the
complete 80 foot hole? After all, they told us all - the community, CU
alumni, CB 9, the politicians, City Council, City Planning, the
Mayor, the State and Federal court system - that they needed all this
space. They could not respect the concept of sharing outlined in the
197 A Community plan because they had to have “all or nothing” –
Bollinger’s words. They said they had to condemn and take property from
owners and from residents who live in buildings in the expansion –
evict them all – to be able to expand in the “only way feasible”. To
get their zoning change, they made many promises about uses in the
underground basement which was supposed to create approximately 7 plus
stories of space below the surface. What’s up? Fill us in. Maybe we are
wrong. Maybe there are no problems with the slurry wall.
Current owners are being evicted through eminent domain, and of course
not getting just compensation from ESDC commensurate with the value of
the newly zoned area. Current residents in three buildings have been
evicted and five more buildings (the bulk of those residents facing
primary displacement) still face the bulldozer. If CU has decided they
don’t need all that space in the basement, why can’t they let the rest
of the businesses and residents stay? How can they justify the use of
eminent domain? HEY COLUMBIA, GIVE US AN UPDATE!
Hey pols and CB 9 – get on the case! What’s up?
AND EVERYONE: check out our updated website:
AND COME TO OUR MEETING/RALLY/FIESTA THIS MONDAY. Details below, come
hear the music, come bring your music!
COMMUNITY RALLY, MEETING, FIESTA
THIS MONDAY, APRIL 23, 6:30PM ONWARDS
ST. MARY’S CHURCH, 521 WEST 126TH STREET
* HEAR ABOUT THE OCCUPATION OF A BUILDING THAT COLUMIBA WANTS TO
* COME TALK ABOUT THE NEXT STEPS TO STOP COLUMBIA’S DISPLACEMENT
* BRING YOUR INSTRUMENTS, COME JAM, WE’LL HAVE FOOD TOO
Community residents, workers, property owners, and students joined in a
building takeover of property on historic 125th Street that Columbia
plans to evict and destroy soon as part of its expansion. We joined
forces again in a way that is reminiscent of the coalition developed
during the Hunger Strike of 2007 and Tent City in 2005. During this
occupation process, the Coalition to Preserve Community (CPC) and Stop
Columbia University Displacement (SCUD) established a strong coalition
between the community on campus and the community in the community and
we hope everyone can come to St. Mary’s Church on Monday, April 16 at
6:30 to participate in a rally, meeting, and fiesta (food and music
featured). Let’s keep our momentum going!
We declared 655 W. 125th Street a liberated zone, taking it away from
the clutches of the Empire State Development Corp and giving it back to
its rightful owner. We slept there, enjoying the night air on the
sidewalk for many nights, and brought the sounds of James Brown back to
street level on 125, reflecting the soulful custom of so many of
long gone music shops that gave Harlem its beat and contributed to its
character of free expression. Sometimes a painting or a poem would
magically appear on our wall of art. A group from St. Mary’s church
came by and read a Frederick Douglass poem. Ramon Diaz, owner of
Floridita Restaurant, and his family came by and lent support. The
students held a meeting on campus where community members were the
featured speakers – for the first time since Low Library cracked down
on such meetings about 5 years ago. Sarah Martin, the president of
Grant Houses and Professor Mindy Fullilove were particularly powerful
voices in the defense of the neighborhood. The Rev. Earl Kooperkamp
spoke with both passion and humor, and he will also make his last
appearance at a CPC meeting next Monday, so don’t miss that.
Come on out and get an update, bring your ideas, and enjoy some music,
food and some good company. The gathering will start at 6:30pm and will
go on as long as people care to stay.
SPONSORED BY CPC AND SCUD.
AND CHECK OUT THE UPDATED WEBSITE: www.Stopcolumbia.wordpress.com