Residents Protest Hospital Expansion

| 02 Mar 2015 | 05:01

    Upper East Siders say they don't need more construction and congestion

    A joint project between Memorial Sloan Kettering and CUNY Hunter College to develop a new hospital and education complex on the Upper East Side is heading to a City Council vote on Sept. 16. The proposal calls for the complex to be built on East 74th Street between York Avenue and FDR Drive.

    Andrew Moesel, a spokesperson for Residents for Reasonable Development, who opposes the plan, said the community is already too full to support a hospital.

    "Everyone supports hospitals, but we have to have reasonable and responsible urban planning," said Moesel. "Right now there are many communities in Queens and the Bronx who would love to have a hospital built. But the neighborhood where this project is planned is already completely saturated."

    Moesel said his group is focused on telling people in the community, through flyers and direct engagement, what the proposal entails. They're urging the community at large to contact local leaders, including Council Member Jessica Lappin, to urge them to vote no on Sept. 16.

    Moesel said that when people in the community find out about the project they want to hear more.

    "Even people in the immediate community aren't aware of the project itself or the scope of the project," said Moesel. "So when we tell people the full scope of the project they become alarmed because they don't know."

    Chris Hickey, a spokesperson for Memorial Sloan Kettering spokesperson, characterized those in opposition to the project as only being a "few."

    "All I can say about the few people who are opposed to this is that the project has received a lot of community support, including the approval of Community Board 8, and those in opposition we don't believe are reflective of the community at large," said Hickey.