Lawsuit Filed to Block Randalls Island Project

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Another legal effort has been made to stop the construction of sports fields on Randalls Island.

Several public school parents and East Harlem residents filed a lawsuit in State Supreme Court. Marina Ortiz, an East Harlem activist, says her neighbors would prefer to keep the area for passive rather than active recreation.

ORTIZ: We'd go to Randalls Island, and picnic for an entire weekend, listen to music, play dominoes, cards, whatever. Entire families would gather for a weekend there.

REPORTER: Opponents of the sports fields won a case in January against a contract that would have reserved most of the 63 fields for private schools on weekday afternoons.

But the city has continued to build the fields anyway. Ortiz and other plaintiffs say the whole project needs to get approved by the City Council first. The judge who heard the case today did not immediately issue a ruling. The city Law Department has not responded to a request for comment.

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