NEW BRIGHTON — The city will buy the last parcel of land to add to New Brighton's Goodhue Park to save it from being sold to developers, officials announced.
Mayor Bill de Blasio added $11 million in the budget to go along with the $6 million pledged by Borough President James Oddo to buy the 11.3-acre patch of land from the Children's Aid Society.
A portion of the money will be used for the Children's Aid Society to build a new community center on the site, Oddo said.
"It is difficult to overstate the importance of this victory," Oddo wrote in a Facebook post Monday night announcing the funding.
"It means that the Children’s Aid Society will be able to construct a new community center on the property that will serve generations of North Shore youth, an integral part of the 'Quadrangle Offense' I announced last year, and it also means there will be another 11+ acres permanently preserved from development."
The planned center is the first part of Oddo's "Quadrangle Offense" he's been working on since last year with de Blasio. The plan calls to build four new community facilities in the North Shore, including reopening the former Cromwell Recreation Center.
(Via Borough President James Oddo's Office)
The funding for the final portion of Goodhue comes after residents and elected officials rallied outside the site last month when City Hall didn't include the money for the acquisition in the executive budget.
"This is a victory for open space, and a victory for Staten Island youth of today and tomorrow," Councilwoman Debi Rose, who pushed for the funding, said in a statement.
"North Shore residents spoke, and the mayor listened and responded by including the purchase of the Goodhue parkland in our final budget agreement. Whether you rallied with us at Goodhue, spoke out on social media, or sent letters to the mayor, I thank you for standing with me as I negotiated this at City Hall."
The city has tried to save the land from being sold to developers since 2006 when its owners, the Children's Aid Society, announced it needed to sell to continue to survive. The acquisition of the land started in 2009 and the city took control of the first section in 2011.
The Parks Department opened the first 15-acre parcel on Prospect Avenue as a park in 2013 after an allocation of $5.6 million form then Mayor Michael Bloomberg and another $1.5 million from the City Council.
In 2014, the Parks Department bought the second 11.5-acre patch that includes woodlands with trails to add to the park for $14.6 million.