Friday, September 26, 2014

A statement from Brenda Edwards, founding member of Prospect Park East Network (PPEN) in Prospect Lefferts Gardens

Prospect Park East Network is a group of residents from PLG. We came together out of the need to protect our community from the effects of the luxury development that has penetrated our neighborhood.

The most glaring of these projects has been the development of the 23 story luxury tower at 626 Flatbush Avenue, being built by Hudson companies. We are very much aware of the racial, economic and class overtones and undertones of such a building and have never sought to hide this. In fact, these ideas have always been at the forefront of our mantra.

We are unwilling to allow any misguided accusations to lead us from our primary purpose which is to band together as one in an effort to maintain the beauty, diversity and uniqueness of our community.

We cannot afford to be confused or distracted by those who have defined us based on their own fears and limitations. To do this would be to play right into the hands of those who do not have our best interest. As we destroy each other with unfounded accusations, we weaken our strength as a community. The developers and the powers that be look forward to such a blundering mistake. It allows them to strategize even further for their own benefit as we fight each other.

It is real simple: there is a 23 story luxury tower going up before our very eyes. By the very definition of the term "luxury" in the grand scheme of today's developers, most of us in this community will be excluded from the grand opening in the "community center" and most of us will be excluded from any schools that may be provided by Hudson companies. 

And how many of us will qualify for  the 250 apartments of which only 50 are slated as affordable units (and of course the "affordable" is questionable).

Again, Prospect Park East Network  is a group of sincerely concerned residents who do not wish to exclude any of the members of our community who are willing to work along with us to provide the best living conditions for all. In the words of the late great Ruby Dee "we are in this thing together".