MAS Responds to Questions about BQX & Jane’s Walk

MAS has received questions about our position on the Brooklyn Queens Connector (BQX) project and the Jane’s Walk being organized by Friends of the BQX. We are sharing the letter below with our correspondents, as well as any MAS members who may be following the topic.

Elizabeth Yeampierre
Executive Director, UPROSE
166A 22nd Street
Brooklyn, New York 11232

Dear Elizabeth,

Thank you for our conversation today.

As we discussed, MAS has in no way endorsed the BQX project and we share many of your concerns that the proposal is badly flawed. We are concerned about the BQX’s alignment, finances and the potential for displacement of residential and manufacturing communities.

In a letter to the New York City Economic Development Corporation and the Department of Transportation last summer, we outlined a series of critical questions about the project.

So far, we have not received a response from the City about those concerns. Staff from MAS – myself included – will attend Friday’s walk, in part because we are still seeking answers to these questions. We expect to issue a formal position on the BQX project soon.

Meanwhile, MAS continues to think that further discussion amongst community and citywide voices is needed. Intended as a festival of “walking conversations” we hope that Jane’s Walk can provide a platform to invite – not discourage – that dialogue.

We welcome UPROSE and others critical of the project raising your concerns at the walk tomorrow. Indeed, MAS believes that Jane’s Walks are enriched when they serve as a forum for debate. We also encourage you to host a Jane’s Walk of your own to express your critiques of the BQX project. Dueling Jane’s Walks have been a common – and celebrated – phenomenon in Jane’s Walk NYC over the years.

Finally, we welcome your feedback that perhaps Jane’s Walk should be a more selective event. We are happy to discuss that suggestion with our international partners in planning next year’s festival.

It is our sincere hope that MAS and UPROSE will continue to discuss the BQX and our shared concerns.

Yours truly,

Elizabeth's signature

Elizabeth Goldstein
President
The Municipal Art Society of New York