FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 13, 2007
MAYOR BLOOMBERG URGES STATE LEGISLATIVE LEADERS TO ALLOW OPERATION OF A MARINE TRANSFER STATION ON GANSEVOORT PIER BEFORE END OF LEGISLATIVE SESSION
Letters to State Leaders Detail How Alternative Sites Are Unworkable
Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg today urged Senate Majority Leader Joseph Bruno and Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver to pass legislation authorizing the construction and operation of a marine transfer station (MTS) on the Gansevoort Peninsula in Manhattan before the end of the legislative session. In letters sent to both leaders and to all members of the State Senate and Assembly, the Mayor detailed how the Gansevoort MTS is a critical component of the landmark Solid Waste Management Plan (SWMP) passed by the City Council last July and approved by the State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) in October 2006. The Mayor also detailed how alternative sites were thoroughly studied by the Department of Sanitation during the development of the SWMP and have proven unworkable.
"The City carefully considered many alternatives to the Gansevoort peninsula and determined that it is the best site to process Manhattan's recyclables," said Mayor Bloomberg. "Opponents of this facility claim we haven't considered alternative sites, and have even called it 'illegal.' To borrow from the late Senator Moynihan, they are entitled to their own opinions, but they are not entitled to their own facts. Our review was thorough, and the City Council overwhelmingly approved the plan. Now I urge the state legislature to act quickly to authorize this essential part of it."
The Department of Sanitation examined the feasibility of numerous sites for a Marine Transfer Station during the development of the SWMP. Opponents of the Gansevoort location have continued to put forward unworkable alternatives that have already been ruled out by the Sanitation Department. These sites include Pier 57 and Pier 76 and other locations that are addressed in the Final Environmental Impact Statement for the plan (available at www.nyc.gov). The letters to the legislative leaders detail the ways in which the Pier 57 and Pier 76 locations are unworkable. Building the facility requires an amendment to the Hudson River Park Act, which must be passed by the State Senate and Assembly and signed into law. Amending the law is entirely within the discretion and authority of the State Legislature.
Once the Gansevoort facility is operational, Department of Sanitation (DSNY) trucks will deliver Manhattan's recyclable metal, glass, and plastic there, saving truck trips to the Bronx and New Jersey. Those trucks would not clog bridges, tunnels and roads, reducing truck traffic by and travel 30,000 fewer miles every year. The new facility would also receive Manhattan's recyclable paper that is currently shipped out of the Marine Transfer Station on 59th Street in Manhattan, freeing up that facility to receive Manhattan's commercial waste - currently being trucked to the Bronx and Brooklyn. Manhattan produces 40% of the City's commercial waste, which is approximately 3,000 tons per week. If the amendment does not pass and the Gansevoort facility is not built, none of those truck trips will be eliminated and the Solid Waste Management Plan's requirement that every borough participate in handling its own waste in a substantial way will not be realized.
Stu Loeser/Jason Post (212) 788-2958
Vito Turso (Department of Sanitation)
Read letter to Senator Bruno (in pdf)
Read letter to Speaker Silver (in pdf)