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Kent Barwick Gothamist Interview

Kent Barwick

Municipal Art Society President Kent Barwick is featured in a short interview [Kent Barwick, Municipal Art Society] by Gideon Fink Shapiro in today’s Gothamist. Highlights include:

How important is the outcome of this project to the future of New York, compared to other large projects on your radar? This is probably the most important transportation project on the agenda of New York, and has the most promise for the future. We think the redevelopment of Penn Station as Senator Moynihan envisioned will be the greatest catalyst to the Far West Side. It is as important to the development of the West Side as Grand Central Terminal was to Midtown.

How should the public get involved in order to have a voice in the planning process? Our poll showed there was not as much knowledge as one would have thought. The public cannot really be involved until the government shows us what the plan is. We insist the plan be made public and reviewed by the public before the major decisions are made.

Could the Penn Station project mimic the rushed planning of the Atlantic Yards project in Brooklyn, which also was led by the ESDC and a large developer? I think the Atlantic Yards project is a good example of how not to involve the public. There was no city review. This was all under Pataki. We’re optimistic that Governor Spitzer’s administration will approach this project in a different manner.