Friday, June 09, 2006

Park Your Trash Here

The NY Times is reporting today that Speaker Quinn is backing a key element of the mayor's solid waste plan and may be getting close to a deal with Bloomberg on his proposed SWMP. The key agreement is on using part of the Hudson River Park site down near the Gansevoort Market for a recycling center. As the Speaker told the Times, "...that Manhattan should be responsible for disposing of its own waste, and that a recycling center could be operated at Gansevoort Street without disrupting the park..."

Still up in the air is the fate of the proposed commercial transfer station that the mayor has slated for 59th Street and the proposed residential one at 91st Street on the East Side that has caused so much controversy. The tentative agreement on Gansevoort has already sparked sharp disagreement from parks advocates and Quinn's erstwhile colleagues in the state legislature who represent the area. As Assemblymember Glick told the Times, "It's not the most helpful thing, but it is certainly not the last word."

Indeed it is not. In the middle of all of this is the proposal, Intro 133, to actually try to do something to reduce the city's commercial waste so that a waste station does not need to be built at 59th Street. As we have been saying all along there is nothing in the mayor's plan that does this. Without realistic waste reduction strategies the city's SWMP is doomed to be a bottomless money pit (cha ching Waste Management) and a real threat to New York's businesses that are inevitably going to be stuck with an enormous garbage bill.