3.8.12 Town Planning Working Group Meeting
In Attendance: Jeff, Robert, Sean, Daniel, Darrell, Mark, Justin Stone-Diaz
First on the agenda is report-backs:
1. Occupy Town Square is seeking assistance with a “permit letter” for their event on 3/25 in Brooklyn. Robert has a contact with the parks department, and a personal connection to Eddie Vargas in the Brooklyn Parks Department whom such a letter would be addressed to; Robert agrees to be involved in the drafting and handling of such a letter, stating what we intend to do and that we do not seek to obtain a permit in so doing.
2. SIS has seen sleeping bags and personal tents checked out recently via Working Group contacts. As appropriate we are keeping track of such, and such seems to be tracked appropriately and officially at present. Tables, concrete-filled buckets, and poles are currently accessible to be checked out for events; the People’s Staged stage and materials are currently checked into SIS as their storage location. The blankets which were checked out from Park Slope’s use have been returned to SIS; some personal items left behind (backpacks, etc.) have been held onto with the clearing of that space and are likewise being held in storage at SIS until they can be returned to their owners. The question of whether there are presently any generators at SIS brings up a list of where the generators OWS possesses are currently believed to be stored, and include 702 (East New York), a friend of Sully’s, and possibly Evan Wagner still. They appear to presently be stored in individual apartments, not run off’t, but unless we know where they are they’re gone to OWS use just the same.
3. The discussion of ‘spaces’ is something that is emerging recently, and whether Town Planning would be appropriate to get involved with bringing forward discussions about spaces that have been found in the past few weeks. Darrell, Mark, and Justin agree to continue forward with that discussion and possibly draft a proposal noting the spaces of interest to both the General Assembly and Movement Resources Group, in time for the MRG deadline of 3/15 for the first wave of proposals. Sean notes that Calvin should also be included, and agrees to help via the googlegroup with this moving forward.
1. Discussion of whom should obtain metrocards from the group. Jeff, Daniel, and John are consented to by the group for metrocards
2. In preparation for Occupy Town Square at Fort Green Park in Brooklyn, rounding up as many tables as possible for centralized storage at SIS is desired, as is making more concrete-filled buckets to transport to the site for holding up banners or otherwise anchoring things. It is noted that at the last event, we got into trouble with the parks department for attaching banners and other artwork to fences; we are going to seek means to ground this artwork instead of attaching them to fences, such as using stakes or sandbags to help prop them up without having to attach them to existing structures. We can anticipate having to share the space with other events, and should be seeking to take a proactive view of that and pre-emptively planning to share space. This doesn’t sound like a major problem, however, as it is a fairly large park.
3. Spaces discussion. Mark and Darrell want to discuss Occupy spaces, such as the building presently under vague discussion for purchase as a “headquarters” by the MRG. Darrell, Mark, and Justin have all been looking into spaces independently, and options are discussed; Calvin is noted as someone who should be included in such a discussion. Questions to be asked include whether we are seeking MRG support, and if so whether it is appropriate to write a “proposal” given that the strictures currently stated for that system cap price points at $5k. The desire seems strongly to be in favor of seting up an activist-based community center, especially given there is nothing like that in this particular neighborhood, instead of ‘just’ an office space. Whether such a space should be paid for or merely ‘occupied’ is discussed, as is whether this should be live/work space or just work/event space.
There will be a dialogue with Trinity Church between parishioners and Occupy members on March 29th, regarding the future of Charlotte’s Place and the buildings nearby it. The building next to Charlotte’s Place is presently vacant and is multi-level, potentially serving multiple roles or functional needs.