Health issues must be addressed regarding construction of the Southern Waterfront Development

Dear Editor:

I am writing to you in an effort to publicly document the unconscionable travesty that has plagued Marine View residents since the onset of construction of the Southern Waterfront Development. Although the persistent nuisance factors associated with this project have, thus far, mostly affected the immediate area surrounding the site, the unfortunate chain of events unleashed by this monolith, will ultimately and unavoidably negatively impact the entire population of our once cherished, peaceful corner of the universe.

For several months, I have been pleading with the Administration and the City Council to address, investigate and attempt to resolve the many controversial issues surrounding the Southern Waterfront Development. These issues include the presence, removal and disposal of contaminated dirt, and the relationship of said contaminants to health complaints experienced by Marine View residents since the onset of construction; the accuracy and veracity of traffic impact and carbon monoxide emission studies conducted nearly a decade ago; the compliance of construction site with City Ordinances governing noise and limiting construction hours; possible health concerns that could arise in the future when our neighborhood is surrounded by yet another three garages, given the fact that we are already in the midst of five garages; and finally, overall project density and height.

Thus far, all my attempts to raise awareness and produce results have been met with arrogance, apathy and ridicule. The legitimate concerns voiced by decent, hard working citizens have fallen on deaf ears, remain ignored and presently reside somewhere in limbo. Therefore, I urge all of you, to join the residents of Marine View and demand that the Administration take action to resolve these issues. Please remember that if allowed to proceed, when completed, the Southern Waterfront Development, in all its grandeur, will add a tremendous amount of stress to our daily lives. Currently, the inevitable results of congestion caused by the closing of River Street to accommodate construction needs, has added and produced further delays to our already turtle-paced traffic. If this project is not re-visited, present problems resolved and future problems not studied prior to completion, then we will truly have no one to blame but ourselves.

With the threat of 1600 Park Avenue, the North Pier Project and Maxwell House all waiting for approval, it is imperative to return to the site of conception that gave birth to the disease which will ultimately spawn the insatiable spread of the epidemic.

Lorna Courtney-Martinez


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