Volume 22, Number 33 | The Newspaper of Lower Manhattan | December 25 - 31, 2009
B.P.C. Authority: Regatta community room here to stay
The Battery Park City community room on W. Thames St. will remain open, the B.P.C. Authority promised this week.
“We’re not looking at a reduction in available community space at the Regatta,” authority President Jim Cavanaugh said in a phone interview with Downtown Express. Cavanaugh was responding to recent rumors that the community room, which houses senior and other activities, would get smaller or close entirely.
The authority currently leases about 7,400 square feet at the Regatta building, including offices for security and construction managers and the 1,000-square-foot community room. The lease expires at the end of the year and the authority will go to a month-to-month lease while they renegotiate a longer-term plan, Cavanaugh said.
The authority will likely reduce the amount of space they lease at the Regatta, because they no longer need so much office space, but the community room will not change, Cavanaugh said.
The question of the community room’s future came up at a meeting of Community Board 1’s B.P.C. Community Center Taskforce last week. Ruth Ohman, a senior citizens leader at Gateway Plaza, said the seniors count on having the free space available for potluck suppers and exercise classes. The B.P.C. Community Emergency Response Team uses the space for meetings and drills as well.
The taskforce meeting focused on a memorandum of understanding involving the new B.P.C. community center that is under construction in the base of the residential towers Milstein Properties is building adjacent to the ballfields. The taskforce hopes to protect existing youth programs from competition from the new center, which will likely be run by Asphalt Green. At the meeting, the taskforce passed a draft of an M.O.U. that they hope the authority and Asphalt Green will sign, which would place strict restrictions on Asphalt Green’s operation and the subsidies they receive. Community Board 1, which is advisory, will next discuss the draft at the Jan. 26 full board meeting.
— Julie Shapiro