As of December 2021, more than 50 percent of East River Park has been demolished. The Southern end below Houston is a ruin, with hundreds of mature, healthy trees felled. The first part of our mission–to stop the destruction–is no longer possible. The rest of the mission stands. It is essential for the health of our Lower East Side and East Village. Join us.
Our mission is to stop the destruction of East River Park. East River Park Action seeks environmental justice for our park and the Lower East Side community it serves. We demand a truly resilient and comprehensive plan that provides flood control against the worst effects of the climate crisis and protects the health and well being of the community with minimal destruction of existing parkland and biodiversity.
• The flood control plan should also be constructed in an environmentally forward-thinking manner that will give us a resilient coastline to help absorb storm surges. Previous plans and suggestions from the community and experts can be adapted. See our post, “Whaddaya Want Anyway?”
• We support interim flood protection to protect the neighborhood and to protect the park from the city’s rushing to start the current misguided flood control plan.
• We support further expansion of East River Park over the FDR and new concepts for use of the highway as a way to improve the health of our neighborhood and our world climate.
We can find creative and greener solutions that enhance rather than devastate the health and beauty of our Lower East Side and East Village Communities.
Who We Are
Several Lower East Side residents started East River Park Action in June 2019 to demand a revised flood control plan that will not deprive our neighborhood of our glorious park for years. We were some of the founding members of East River Alliance in early 2019, an organization that decided to advocate responsible stewardship and accountability working with the new East Side Coastal Resiliency project. East River Park Action formed to express vocal opposition to the project when less destructive plans are possible.
Many others residents from the neighborhood–and from around the city–were eager to join the effort. Our all-volunteer group grew.
• Hundreds have participated in rallies, protests, hearings, and outreach campaigns. Read about and see videos from one of our marches and rallies: https://eastriverparkaction.org/2021/04/19/big-march-to-save-the-park/
• We have a LES Breathe Team that is developing a people’s air monitoring system to protect our neighborhood.
• We were lead plaintiff in a lawsuit that appealed for alienation from the state to gain oversight and demand accountability from the City. Read about it: https://eastriverparkaction.org/2021/05/03/alienation-lawsuit-appeal/ We lost our final appeal Dec. 16, 2021 when the state’s highest court, the Court of Appeals, turned down our request for appeal.
• We are also sued the city to see the three-year-old unredacted Value Engineering Study that we uncovered via a Freedom of Information Law (FOIL) and appeal. Read about it here: https://eastriverparkaction.org/2021/04/05/lawsuit-filed-for-unredacted-value-engineering-report/
• We have become a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization. We are a peaceful, nonviolent grassroots group that plans collaboratively.
• We have raised more than $70,000 from more than 600 donors for our legal fund and other activities. Most donations are in the $10-$25 range, reflecting the modest-income nature of our neighborhood. We are not Brooklyn Heights that could raise $100,000 in a few days to squash the idea of demolishing the Brooklyn Heights promenade for a few years for rebuilding of the BQE. Please donate to our legal fund.
• We’ve generated press coverage and an active social media presence at @ERPaction.
The city is determined to bury East River Park. Say no.
Please email if you would like to participate. You can choose to work with one or more of our teams–let us know if you are especially interested in our Action Team (planning protests), Political Team (pestering officials), Legal Team, Breathe Team (air and soil monitoring), or Outreach Team: