Damrosch Park is an essential part of Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts; this park is now used to accommodate New York Fashion Week, The Big Apple Circus and other private events. New York Fashion Week was held at Bryant Park since 1993, but in the fall of 2010, it has moved to Lincoln Center. Local Residents and Park Advocates are not pleased with giving up their park 10 months out of the year to accommodate these events. During these events local residents are restricted to certain areas of the park; there are large tents and private security guards.
On Tuesday, May 21st, members of the Damrosch family, NYC Park Advocates and members of the Committee for Environmentally Sound Development gathered to discuss their lawsuit against the City of New York for its illegal use of Damrosch Park.
Geoffrey Croft, President of NYC Park Advocates said “the revenue generated from the park is diverted to Lincoln Center; Lincoln Center is being allowed to use Damrosch Park as an ATM.” Croft also went on to talk about the city handing the park over to Lincoln Center for commercial purposes, the removal of the iconic leaf identifying the park and also the removal of trees from the park to make room for the Fashion Week tents.
Olive Freud, a member of the Committee for Environmentally Sound Development, said “in this densely populated neighborhood of cement, glass and terribly tall buildings, a park is the highest priority to the public.” Freud also talked about how she hoped this lawsuit would help to give the park back to community, so that everyone can enjoy it once again.
Cleo Dana, a member of Friends of Damrosch Park, said “the bronze plaque commemorating the five members of the Damrosch Family has vanished.” When asked where it was Dana was told it was in storage. Dana also mentioned she filed a Freedom of Information Act regarding the use of the park but has gotten no answer as yet.
New York City Fashion Week is scheduled from September 5th-12, 2013 at the Lincoln Center.