You are here
Seward Park Urban Renewal Area (SPURA)
A New Destiny for an Old Urban Renewal Site
Four decades ago, an urban renewal project near the foot of the Williamsburg Bridge on Manhattan's Lower East Side displaced thousands of low-income tenants. While the city built affordable housing on some of the cleared parcels in the Seward Park Urban Renewal Area (SPURA), several large blocks went undeveloped. Today, parking lots occupy the undeveloped zone of SPURA along Delancey Street, even while the Lower East Side, where the typical household earns $37,000 a year, urgently needs more affordable housing.
This fall the community organizing group Good Old Lower East Side (GOLES) and the neighborhood history project City Lore convened Lower East Side residents and other stakeholders in a series of four visioning sessions designed to generate discussion about the site's future, the neighborhood's needs, and the place of affordable housing in an area that has seen an influx of higher-income new residents along side largely poor families. Pratt Center Planner Paula Crespo developed and facilitated the workshops. GOLES will present participants' input to the city agencies that control the land, making the case for development that brings benefits to a wide range of residents in the neighborhood.