Bloomberg Tells Protesters Zuccotti Park Needs Cleaning

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Hundreds sleep in Zuccotti Park, the center of the Occupy Wall Street protests, on October 10, 2011. (Ben Johnson/WNYC)

Mayor Michael Bloomberg went to Zuccotti Park Wednesday to tell protesters that the park would be cleaned on Friday morning.

Deputy Mayor for Operations Cas Holloway said the cleaning "will be done in stages and the protesters will be able to return to the areas that have been cleaned, provided they abide by the rules that Brookfield has established for the park."

He added that Bloomberg is "a strong believer in the First Amendment and believes that the protesters have a right to continue to protest. At the same time, the last three weeks have created unsanitary conditions and considerable wear and tear on the park."

Brookfield Properties, which owns Zuccotti Park, has expressed concern about the conditions in the park since Occupy Wall Street protesters began camping out there.

In a letter sent to Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly on Tuesday, Brookfield Properties wrote "conditions at the Park have deteriorated to unsanitary and unsafe levels." The company said they have been unable to clean or do necessary maintenance.

The protesters' response was to plan a demonstration for an hour before clean-up on Friday is to begin. They believe the effort by Brookfield Properties to clean the park is an attempt to end the protest.

With the Associated Press



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Comments [9]

D Eaves from NYC

WNYC, Mark Garber et al, PLEASE be very careful how you cover and report this developing story on the attempt to "clean" Zuccotti park. It must be made clear that this may be a tactic to rid the park of protesters for good. To repeat sound bites about the "hygiene" of the protesters is delivering exactly what is most likely intended : painting them as dirty, low life, hippie-like, etc etc. We expect WNYC to be rigorous with it's handling of these events. Thank you.

Oct. 13 2011 05:57 PM
James Owens from Manhattan

OWS has indeed commented on this story and pointed out that since the new 'rules' prohibit possessions and 'lying down' this is nothing less than an attempt to shut down political expression by OWS. It is really unfortunate the WNYC gave space for the mayor's bogus claim about his love for constitutional rights while not including any critical look at what his office and the police are actually up to.

Oct. 13 2011 05:25 PM
Seth M.

OWS perticipants should pull there funds together collectively and pay for the porta-johns and dumpsters. Show the city that they are here for the long haul.

Oct. 13 2011 03:52 PM
Fuva from Harlemworld

Any agreement to temporarily partially or totally evacuate must be iron clad

Oct. 13 2011 10:54 AM
Fuva from Harlemworld

Dunno...Is sanitation not a legitimate concern here? If so, Bloomberg has announced in front of the world that OWS can return after clean-up. Maybe he should be taken at his word (and given rope to hang himself). If OWS is in anyway blocked from returning, they/we will be forced to justifiably occupy wherever on Wall Street they/we please...I'm a little concerned that Bloomberg & co are trying to bait OWS into seeming unreasonable and losing public support...PORTA-POTTIES and CURBSIDE DUMPSTERS -- defintely needed. Maybe negotiate for them as part of the (total or partial) temporary evacuation. Or get them somehow privately donated...

Oct. 13 2011 10:47 AM

Mr Mayor:

If you have any real concern for public health and quality of life, please show it by providing OWS with port-a-potties and curbside dumpsters today.

Oct. 13 2011 09:51 AM
bfy from upper west side

It's about time that WNYC has started telling more balanced stories about what is happening with Occupy Wall Street. I've been so disappointed with the dismissive and critical tone of the reporting, both on the website and on air, I've considered discontinuing support for the station. I guess no one wanted to take a risk that this is an actual movement, not just some blip on the radar.

Oct. 13 2011 09:38 AM
aa_aa from earth

"wear and tear" - in a few days the city will deem the park "unsafe" or "too worn and torn" for public use and in effect shut down this protest. the richest man in nyc believes in the right to protest against banks?
"wear and tear" euphemism for "i'm shutting this thing down."

Oct. 13 2011 12:05 AM
Michael Burchill from Califon, NJ

Are the property owners really all that concerned about "cleaning and doing maintenance"?

Watch Out OWS... looks like someone is looking for legal precedence.

...And I think it's great Mr. Bloomberg supports your First Amendment rights... but he seems to be really concerned about the "wear and tear" on the park (that he probably hasn't ever set foot in). Meaning, he's going to come down on the side of the property owners.

But this park is different. It has a different legal definition, from a public usage standpoint....

Oct. 12 2011 10:50 PM

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