Saturday, February 27, 2010

Ed Alstrom's new CD "GETTIN' ORGAN-IZED" is Now Available!


Ed Alstrom's new CD "GETTIN' ORGAN-IZED"
is now available at CDBABY & DIGSTATION!


The Yankee Stadium weekend organist cuts loose! Alstrom's daring and extravagant Hammond approach is joined here with the muscular playing of Charlie Jones on guitar and Don Guinta on drums (yes, Alstrom sings, on one tune).
A gut-busting mix of jazz, blues, boogaloo, and R&B,
these guys bring an highly energetic new slant to the traditional organ trio.



To buy the CD: go to
http://cdbaby.com/cd/EdAlstrom1
To download individual tracks or the whole album, go to
http://www.digstation.com/EdAlstrom

By all means, feel free to forward this to your friends and/or your mailing list.

Thanks for your support!

Ed Alstrom
www.edalstrom.com

Friday, February 26, 2010

Come See Ed Alstrom - Organist for the New York Yankees at Trumpets Jazz Club


R to L: Dave Keyes (piano), Ed Alstrom (guitar),
Mark Berger (bass), Frank Pagano (drums)
... all singing, all the time!


Thursday, March 4,
7:30PM ~ 11:30PM
at
TRUMPETS JAZZ CLUB
Walnut St. @ Depot Sq., Montclair, NJ
Telephone: 973-744-2600
Food & drink available
www.trumpetsjazz.com
$10.00 cover, $5.00 minimum

"Vintage R&B" - great, witty songs of the 5 Royales, Coasters, Contours, Andre Williams, Allan Toussaint, Chris Kenner, Hank Ballard, and many others, with all the vocal harmonies intact!

Hope to see you there!
Ed

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

EMERGENCY PETITION FOR TEMPORARY INJUNCTION FOR GATE 2

TO THE
HONORABLE MICHAEL BLOOMBERG
MAYOR OF THE CITY OF NEW YORK
February 23, 2010
___________
COMMITTEE TO COMMEMORATE OLD YANKEE STADIUM, Petitioners
___________
EMERGENCY PETITION FOR TEMPORARY INJUNCTION
AGAINST THE DESTRUCTION
OF
OLD YANKEE STADIUM
LEFT FIELD GATE 2
___________
On February 22, 2010, the Parks & Recreation Department of New York City ("Parks & Recreation") proposed at Public Hearing before a partial assembly of the Public Design Commission of New York ("Design Commission") petitioning the complete destruction of original Old Yankee Stadium (1923-1973), including historic Left Field Gate 2, leaving NOTHING from the original Stadium for the People of New York.
Despite numerous, long-standing, and exhaustively evidenced filings to the City of New York - including to Parks & Recreation, as well as to the Design Commission - proving beyond any doubt the Gate's preeminent historical importance, the Parks proposal to destroy it was approved. Moreover, dramatic, and dramatically-flawed, design changes to the design of "Old Yankee Stadium Park" (formerly referred to as "Heritage Field") were also approved, though they had never been revealed to the public for review and comment. These design change proposals were deliberately held from the public, until yesterday, when they were very briefly, unexpectedly, and incompletely, revealed.
We, the Committee to Commemorate Old Yankee Stadium - consisting of and representing Yankee Stadium experts, fans, and citizens throughout the City, State, Nation, and World - hereby petition for the immediate intervention of Mayor Michael Bloomberg to TEMPORARILY STAY the destruction of Yankee Gate 2, and the implementation of the Parks Department's proposed plan for Old Yankee Stadium Park, until such time that all of the following twenty-six (26) facts, arguments and supporting evidence, are thoroughly and properly admitted, evaluated and adjudicated by the City of New York. [The Design Commission failed and refused to consider all these facts, ruling that their review was and is limited to "aesthetics only" - disregarding therefore the vast majority of facts, evidence, and reasons, compelling preservation of the Gate]:
(1) Original Yankee Stadium is the most historically significant stadium in American history. Indeed, it was widely and expertly regarded the most culturally and architecturally important stadium in the history of the New World and the Western Hemisphere. Not since the Roman Coliseum - on which it was architecturally modeled - has there been a more important or popular stadium. [The Stadium's history is documented by thousands of articles, books, documentaries, films, and video accounts. For a very quick and readily accessible visual overviews, see the Committee to Commemorate Old Yankee Stadium's videos: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rZn1qCwMqLQ & http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mAN7LfBtckw]
(2) Old Yankee Stadium is a New York, national, and international icon. In fact, Mayor Bloomberg prominently attested to the fact that, based on his extensive travels and experience, it is one of New York's top three icons around the world, rivaled only by the Empire State Building, and the Statue of Liberty. [See, e.g., Yankee Stadium: The Official Retrospective, 2008]
(3) Old Yankee Stadium was the most important sports venue in American history. It is frequently referred to as a "shrine" and "cathedral" because of its sublime significance in the history of Baseball, most particularly during Baseball's "Golden Age" (1923-1964) - when the New York Yankees were the greatest sports dynasty in world history.
(4) When the City of New York announced the granting of land and funding for building of a new stadium for the Yankee franchise, they promised the People of New York that they would NOT destroy all of Old Yankee Stadium. In fact, they promised to save a vast majority of the original outer "shell" and lower seating area. The Mayor, Parks Department, Economic Development Council - as well as George Steinbrenner and Yankee management - all publicly backed this plan and promise. Attached are two images of the City's original plan
(5) Reneging on their promise, the City of New York abandoned the plan to preserve ANY part of the shell or interior of the original Stadium, instead deciding to allow it to be "deconstructed" and sold off (by the Yankees and Steiner Corporation) to private bidders, leaving NOTHING from the Original Stadium on the historic site, nor anything from it for the People of New York.
(6) Simultaneously, the City showered the Yankee franchise with nearly 2 Billion dollars, claiming it had no money whatsoever to save any part of the original Stadium. [See, e.g., http://www.usatoday.com/sports/columnist/oconnor/2006-08-16-oconnor-yankee-stadium_x.htm]
(7) When challenged on this stunning reversal by the City, they claimed - largely through Parks Commissioner Adrian Benepe - expressly and quite erroneously claimed that nothing from the Original Stadium survived the 1970's renovation - only "some steel ... and some of the bricks (sic)."
(9) Commissioner Benepe was immediately and emphatically criticized for his erroneous conclusions leading to his deision to destroy all of the Original Stadium. [See, e.g.,
(10) In order to help preserve part of the Original Stadium, expert, fans, and citizens from around the city, state, and nation, provided overwhelming evidence to Commissioner Benepe that his understanding and decision to destroy all of the Original Stadium was fatally flawed by a mis/dis evaluation of the Stadium's architectural history. He has received hundreds of communications attesting to this fact, but has disregarded them all, obdurately insisting that nothing was original, and nothing original would be saved.
(11) Many of the expert communications and evidential submissions Mr. Benepe has received - from architects, historians, public advocacy groups included - attested to the overwhelming originality of Gate 2, and its perfect location for preservation within the proposed new park, now known as "Old Yankee Stadium Park." The Committee to Commemorate Old Yankee Stadium has been one of those groups. See, e.g.,
(11) To support this incorrect argument and position, against the overwhelming weight of expert findings and evidence, the Commissioner then falsely claimed that the City's Landmark Preservation Commission (the "LPC") had already investigated and ruled that Gate 2 was not original or worthy of presevation. Despite repeated requests for the records on which Mr. Benepe based his decision to tear down the gate, the Parks Department has not (and can not) produce any such LPC findings or rulings. Multiple members of our Committee HAVE reviewed the entire LPC case file, and there are NO records whatsoever regarding Gate 2.
(12) Thus, the basis of the Parks Department's decision to tear down Gate 2 is thoroughly erroneous, as proved over and over. In truth, Gate 2 is dramatically original, up to 95% so, including its recently revealed foundation and interior, with only a small portion of its upper face renovated in the 1970's (IN COMPLETE ARCHITECTURAL COMPORT WITH THE ORIGINAL 1920's DESIGN & APPEARANCE.)
(13) Gate 2 is so original in design and appearance, in fact, that it is the only existing model for the Offial Logo of Old Yankee Stadium, and the Yankees' commemorative sleeve emblem, attached hereto.
(14) Official Bronx County Historian has also repeatedly advised Mr. Benepe and the Parks Department (along with numerous top Yankee Stadium historians and historical architects) that the Gate is original and should be reserved. He, too - along with numerous other top Yankee Stadium historians and historic architects - was completely disregarded. See, e.g.,
(15) In addition to calling for the preservation of the Gate, Professor Ultan was also critical of Parks' "historically-disconnected" proposal for the new park, sagely observing "What's missing from the park plan is the architecture of the stadium itself." Prominent architectural critic and National Trust for Historic Preservation Board Member, Paul Goldberger, American Institute of Architect New York President Rick Bell, former LPC Chairperson Sherida Bell, and other experts, panned the plan as well. See,
(16) Past President of the Connecticut AIA, a former Bronx resident and expert on Yankee Stadium, Jeffrey Bianco, also criticized the plan, and called for preservation of the Gate, as have Baseball, Yankee and Yankee Stadium historians and authors, Paul Doherty, Bill Jenkinson, Mike Wagner, Mark Healey, and Harry Swanson, among many others. Listen, e.g., to:
See, also, the endorsements of Paul Doherty, Michael Wagner, and Brad Turnow, HistoryOfTheYankees.com - all on file with the Design Commission.
(17) The Committee to Commemorate Old Yankee Stadium successfully presented our case to the Design Commission for preserving Gate 2 on October 26, leading the Commission also to recognize and reject the profound flaws in the Parks Department's preliminary plan. Our written submission, with extensive evidential references, is below, followed by a news account of the Commission's rejection.
(18) At this Hearing the Parks Department claimed saving the Gate would cost $10 Million dollars, because - still wrongly claiming - it was "not original." After we revealed a Legacy Bricks plan that could raise such funds - not withstanding emphatic and well-evidenced proof that such an estimate was extravagantly high ("by an order of magnitude or two") - the Department than increased its estimate to over $15 Million, again without any evidence or explanation whatsoever.
Notably, the estimate does not include any savings that would result from not having to demolish and remove the gate from the site where it presently stands.
(19) Subsequently, after extensive Freedom of Information (FOIL) requests (on file with Parks Department), our Committee learned that parks was basing this amount on an unsigned, unattributed, "summary cost estimate." When we pressed for further records to explain what every expert (architects, certified construction cost estimator, government contract experts, construction foremen, ironworkers, et al) unanimously found an outrageous, totally unfounded, and even "laughable" estimate, we were told by Parks lawyers that there were none - no date, no drawings, no data - not even the name, title, experience, or credentials of who performed the alleged estimate, nothing. None were provided to the Design Commission, either.
(20) To help resolve the order of magnitude(s) difference between the Parks Departments cost estimate and those from all of our experts, we repeatedly requested (more than a dozen times) to perform a free-of-charge architectural, structural, and cost, evaluation, of the Gate, by top experts, all experienced and bonded for construction site work. [See Parks Department and City records] Each and every time our requests were either totally ignored, or totally rejected, falsely claiming security and safety prohibitions - while unbonded construction worker girlfriends, baseball players, celebrities, film crews, reporters, etc., visited every part of the construction site.
In contrast, our experts, all bonded and extensively experienced for work on construction sites were all denied access - to the most safe and secure area of the stadium site, indeed one that could even be visited from its outside sidewalk entrance.
(21) As one example of this outrageous obstruction, please see the attached correspondence and speech of architect and Yankee Stadium historian, Philip J. Reina, who our Committee presented to the Parks Department as a free-of-charge independent Gate evaluator.
The Parks Department denied Mr. Reina access for an independent review, and even just the drawings used to conduct the City's so-called cost estimate, because, according to them, IT WOULD POSE A TERRORIST THREAT to the City of New York, if were to do so! [Official reason given directly to Mr. Reina by high ranking Parks Official Frank McCue, on Feb 18, 2010, for withholding stadium drawings.] (Notwithstanding that the Stadium is utterly empty and slated for complete destruction within a month's time - by the City itself - not terrorrists.)
This is how absurdly far the Parks Department has gone to deny an independent cost evaluation for preserving Gate 2.
(22) To further address the alleged cost concern, our Committee, along with HistoryOfTheYankees.com, voluntarily consulted with leading "legacy brick" authorities, most notably the company which did the extremely financially and aesthetically successful and well-received commemorative brick plazas and walkways at Citifield, and many other major sports venues around the country. See, e.g.: http://ccoys.blogspot.com/2009/11/save-gate-commemorative-brick-drive.html. This program could raise over $10 Million dollars, simultaneously enhancing the park's appeal and tourism, and consequently much-needed, year-round revenue for the Yankee Stadium neighborhood. We offered our full and free-of-charge help to make this "SAVE THE GATE COMMEMORATIVE BRICK DRIVE" a major success. Additionally, we put the company who did "Fanwalk" for the Mets directly in touch with the Parks Department.
(21) Despite this aesthetically beautiful, widely-praised and very lucrative, funding opportunity, Parks rejected it because - contrary to all well-established practices and experience at many hundreds of similar sites around the world - "the bricks will wear down" and people will inscribe the bricks with " 'I Hate the Yankees' and things like that." [Parks Deputy Chief of Staff Rebecca Smith, speaking officially for Commissioner Benepe,, at Parks Headquarters, on behalf of the Department on February 1, at a meeting with our Committee.]
(21) Another of our Committee's other cost-saving proposal - the SAVE THE GATE VOLUNTEER WORKER PROGRAM - was unceremoniously shot down by Parks, at that same meeting [February 1, 2010, at the Arsenal, in Central Park] Parks officials informed us that "the unions will never allow us to use volunteer workers." This unattributed charge against the union was not evidenced. In fact, FOIL requests of Parks for any evidence for such a claim reveal that it can not be backed up. It's erroneous and derogatory speculation. Moreover, "the unions" will not "lose" or "gain" any work if the City tears down the Gate. Indeed, many relevant union workers - as well as professionals - are active supporters of all our efforts, including the Volunteer Worker Program, which woulsd eliminate virtually all labor costs associated with gate Preservation.
Further, this "reason" for rejecting such a beneficial program flies right in the face of City volunteer philosophies and programs:
There would be no shortage of volunteers for saving the Gate.
(22) Revealing further error and bullheadedness behind the Department's decision to destroy the Gate (no matter what facts, evidence and reasoning compel its preservation), they also argued that our proposed design "would be an eyesore." This against all independent expert and objective evidence, including universal popular acclaim for the magnificent aesthetics of our proposed Gate monument. See, e.g., the images of the proposal linked below, as well as our 3d video of it - WHICH WE WERE NOT PERMITTED TO SHOW AT THE DESIGN COMMISSION' PUBLIC HEARING - thereby depriving the Commission of a major piece of aesthetic evidence.
(23) Parks also argues that preserving the Gate would take too long. This argument, at best, stems from a severely poor and inaccurate estimate of the Gate's well-documented originality - as well as from the above-cited half-page cost-estimate which wrongly implies the need for far more extensive work than truly necessary, as also does their erroneous argument that huge trusses and pilings are required to preserve the Gate - another claim emphatically rejected by independent construction experts. Furthermore, it completely disregard the fact that the new park will not be opening for almost two years, and all independent experts estimate only a couple of months work, at very most, to save the Gate.
(24) Likewise, the argument that the gate will take up too much space is completely wrong. It will take up only less than 1% of the new park's square footage, in a location where it will not interfere whatsoever with park activities or design.
(25) At Parks Headquarters, Parks officials said their decision was also based on their beliefs that the Gate would "cast big shadows" and "suck up air." No evidence was presented or can be presented for such wild conclusions. First of all the fact that New Yankee Stadium is east of the gate obviates any concerns of morning "shadows", and its location on the extreme east side of the new park eliminates afternoon shadows. In between obviously creates no deleterious shadows, either.
As for "sucking up air", that's unsubstantiated nonsense also.
These headstrong arguments also ignore the fact that the original City plan include 360 degrees of buildings around the park. See attached image of plan with outer shell and extensive seating.
(26) Finally, after publicly making it so well known how closely they've worked the Yankees on all matters pertaining to the new park, the Parks Department have repeatedly indicated that they were motivated to destroy all of Original Yankee Stadium because "the Yankees don't want to save any part of it, so why should we." [Deputy Director Rebecca Smith, February 1, 2010, at The Arsenal meeting to members of the Committee to Commemorate Old Yankee Stadium and HistoryOfTheYankees.com]
Equally outrageous and destructive was the very public pronouncement shocking by Bronx Parks Commissioner Hector Aponte, at the Community Board 4 Meeting on February 18, that "the Yankees want you to go across the street to the new Stadium, they don't want to save anything from the Old Stadium ... The Gate will be gone." He also dramatically (mis/dis)informed the audience of mostly local Bronx residents that Gate 2 was ruled non-original [by the LPC.] with complete certitude that Gate 2 was not original and the (LPC) - thereby fomenting ill-informed local opposition to saving it.
The Design Commission also expressed their belief that the Yankees were against saving any part of the Old Stadium. [For example, at the Public Hearing of October 26, 2010.]
These beliefs, motivations, and pronouncements have made it impossible to get a fair hearing to save a treasure that rightfully belongs to the People of New York, not the Yankees, who already have been generously given a new stadium, and rights to sell treasures of the Old Stadium, at very great expense to the People of New York. If the Steinbrenner-owned Yankees truly don't want to save any part of the Original (pre-Steinbrenner) Stadium, as it appears from their lack of visible support, public reports by the Parks Department, that should have had absolutely no bearing or influence on the City's decision.
__________
[It should be noted as supporting evidence that HistoryOfTheYankees.com, and the SavetheYankeeGate2 Committee [www.savetheyankeegate2.com], among other parties nobly and diligently working to help Save the Gate, have faced nearly identical obstacles and obstructions as those described above. Therefore, they should be contacted for as supporting witnesses to this petition.]
Please also see the Written Submission and Speech of the Committee to Committee to Commemorate Old Yankee Stadium, to the Design Commission, dated and submitted, respectively, on February 18 and 22, 2010.
__________
On the basis of these twenty-six (26) facts, reasons, and supporting evidence - separately and collectively - the Committee to Commemorate Old Yankee Stadium requests an immediate
EMERGENCY MAYORAL INJUNCTION
temporarily protecting Yankee Gate 2 from any deconstruction, sale, demolition, or structural compromise, until all of the above is fully and properly heard, investigated, and adjudicated.
TIME IS OF THE ESSENCE.
Respectfully submitted to the Honorable Mayor Michael Bloomberg, via the Public Design Commission & Parks Department, with the request that the Mayor's Office and Mayor be forwarded this EMERGENCY PETITION immediately upon its receipt:
Tim Reid, on behalf of
The Committee to Commemorate Old Yankee Stadium

EMERGENCY PETITION FOR TEMPORARY INJUNCTION FOR GATE 2

TO THE
HONORABLE MICHAEL BLOOMBERG
MAYOR OF THE CITY OF NEW YORK

February 23, 2010

___________


COMMITTEE TO COMMEMORATE OLD YANKEE STADIUM, Petitioners

___________


EMERGENCY PETITION FOR TEMPORARY INJUNCTION
AGAINST THE DESTRUCTION
OF
OLD YANKEE STADIUM
LEFT FIELD GATE 2

___________

On February 22, 2010, the Parks & Recreation Department of New York City ("Parks & Recreation") proposed at Public Hearing before a partial assembly of the Public Design Commission of New York ("Design Commission") petitioning the complete destruction of original Old Yankee Stadium (1923-1973), including historic Left Field Gate 2, leaving NOTHING from the original Stadium for the People of New York.

Despite numerous, long-standing, and exhaustively evidenced filings to the City of New York - including to Parks & Recreation, as well as to the Design Commission - proving beyond any doubt the Gate's preeminent historical importance, the Parks proposal to destroy it was approved. Moreover, dramatic, and dramatically-flawed, design changes to the design of "Old Yankee Stadium Park" (formerly referred to as "Heritage Field") were also approved, though they had never been revealed to the public for review and comment. These design change proposals were deliberately held from the public, until yesterday, when they were very briefly, unexpectedly, and incompletely, revealed.

We, the Committee to Commemorate Old Yankee Stadium - consisting of and representing Yankee Stadium experts, fans, and citizens throughout the City, State, Nation, and World - hereby petition for the immediate intervention of Mayor Michael Bloomberg to TEMPORARILY STAY the destruction of Yankee Gate 2, and the implementation of the Parks Department's proposed plan for Old Yankee Stadium Park, until such time that all of the following twenty-six (26) facts, arguments and supporting evidence, are thoroughly and properly admitted, evaluated and adjudicated by the City of New York. [The Design Commission failed and refused to consider all these facts, ruling that their review was and is limited to "aesthetics only" - disregarding therefore the vast majority of facts, evidence, and reasons, compelling preservation of the Gate]:

(1) Original Yankee Stadium is the most historically significant stadium in American history. Indeed, it was widely and expertly regarded the most culturally and architecturally important stadium in the history of the New World and the Western Hemisphere. Not since the Roman Coliseum - on which it was architecturally modeled - has there been a more important or popular stadium. [The Stadium's history is documented by thousands of articles, books, documentaries, films, and video accounts. For a very quick and readily accessible visual overviews, see the Committee to Commemorate Old Yankee Stadium's videos: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rZn1qCwMqLQ & http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mAN7LfBtckw]

(2) Old Yankee Stadium is a New York, national, and international icon. In fact, Mayor Bloomberg prominently attested to the fact that, based on his extensive travels and experience, it is one of New York's top three icons around the world, rivaled only by the Empire State Building, and the Statue of Liberty. [See, e.g., Yankee Stadium: The Official Retrospective, 2008]

(3) Old Yankee Stadium was the most important sports venue in American history. It is frequently referred to as a "shrine" and "cathedral" because of its sublime significance in the history of Baseball, most particularly during Baseball's "Golden Age" (1923-1964) - when the New York Yankees were the greatest sports dynasty in world history.

(4) When the City of New York announced the granting of land and funding for building of a new stadium for the Yankee franchise, they promised the People of New York that they would NOT destroy all of Old Yankee Stadium. In fact, they promised to save a vast majority of the original outer "shell" and lower seating area. The Mayor, Parks Department, Economic Development Council - as well as George Steinbrenner and Yankee management - all publicly backed this plan and promise. Attached are two images of the City's original plan

(5) Reneging on their promise, the City of New York abandoned the plan to preserve ANY part of the shell or interior of the original Stadium, instead deciding to allow it to be "deconstructed" and sold off (by the Yankees and Steiner Corporation) to private bidders, leaving NOTHING from the Original Stadium on the historic site, nor anything from it for the People of New York.

(6) Simultaneously, the City showered the Yankee franchise with nearly 2 Billion dollars, claiming it had no money whatsoever to save any part of the original Stadium. [See, e.g., http://www.usatoday.com/sports/columnist/oconnor/2006-08-16-oconnor-yankee-stadium_x.htm]

(7) When challenged on this stunning reversal by the City, they claimed - largely through Parks Commissioner Adrian Benepe - expressly and quite erroneously claimed that nothing from the Original Stadium survived the 1970's renovation - only "some steel ... and some of the bricks (sic)."

http://www.nydailynews.com/ny_local/bronx/2008/06/23/2008-06-23_parks_commissioner_adrian_benepe_confirm.html

(9) Commissioner Benepe was immediately and emphatically criticized for his erroneous conclusions leading to his deision to destroy all of the Original Stadium. [See, e.g.,
http://www.nysun.com/opinion/save-yankee-stadium-babes-granddaughter-says-yes/84425/]

(10) In order to help preserve part of the Original Stadium, expert, fans, and citizens from around the city, state, and nation, provided overwhelming evidence to Commissioner Benepe that his understanding and decision to destroy all of the Original Stadium was fatally flawed by a mis/dis evaluation of the Stadium's architectural history. He has received hundreds of communications attesting to this fact, but has disregarded them all, obdurately insisting that nothing was original, and nothing original would be saved.

(11) Many of the expert communications and evidential submissions Mr. Benepe has received - from architects, historians, public advocacy groups included - attested to the overwhelming originality of Gate 2, and its perfect location for preservation within the proposed new park, now known as "Old Yankee Stadium Park." The Committee to Commemorate Old Yankee Stadium has been one of those groups. See, e.g.,

http://www.ultimateyankees.com/CCOYSGate2.htm

(11) To support this incorrect argument and position, against the overwhelming weight of expert findings and evidence, the Commissioner then falsely claimed that the City's Landmark Preservation Commission (the "LPC") had already investigated and ruled that Gate 2 was not original or worthy of presevation. Despite repeated requests for the records on which Mr. Benepe based his decision to tear down the gate, the Parks Department has not (and can not) produce any such LPC findings or rulings. Multiple members of our Committee HAVE reviewed the entire LPC case file, and there are NO records whatsoever regarding Gate 2.

(12) Thus, the basis of the Parks Department's decision to tear down Gate 2 is thoroughly erroneous, as proved over and over. In truth, Gate 2 is dramatically original, up to 95% so, including its recently revealed foundation and interior, with only a small portion of its upper face renovated in the 1970's (IN COMPLETE ARCHITECTURAL COMPORT WITH THE ORIGINAL 1920's DESIGN & APPEARANCE.)

(13) Gate 2 is so original in design and appearance, in fact, that it is the only existing model for the Offial Logo of Old Yankee Stadium, and the Yankees' commemorative sleeve emblem, attached hereto.

(14) Official Bronx County Historian has also repeatedly advised Mr. Benepe and the Parks Department (along with numerous top Yankee Stadium historians and historical architects) that the Gate is original and should be reserved. He, too - along with numerous other top Yankee Stadium historians and historic architects - was completely disregarded. See, e.g.,

http://www.nydailynews.com/ny_local/bronx/2009/08/17/2009-08-17_the_gate_debate_boosters_push_to_save_and_restore_historic_entrance_at_old_stadi.html

(15) In addition to calling for the preservation of the Gate, Professor Ultan was also critical of Parks' "historically-disconnected" proposal for the new park, sagely observing "What's missing from the park plan is the architecture of the stadium itself." Prominent architectural critic and National Trust for Historic Preservation Board Member, Paul Goldberger, American Institute of Architect New York President Rick Bell, former LPC Chairperson Sherida Bell, and other experts, panned the plan as well. See,

http://www.nydailynews.com/ny_local/bronx/2009/08/17/2009-08-17_the_gate_debate_boosters_push_to_save_and_restore_historic_entrance_at_old_stadi.html

(16) Past President of the Connecticut AIA, a former Bronx resident and expert on Yankee Stadium, Jeffrey Bianco, also criticized the plan, and called for preservation of the Gate, as have Baseball, Yankee and Yankee Stadium historians and authors, Paul Doherty, Bill Jenkinson, Mike Wagner, Mark Healey, and Harry Swanson, among many others. Listen, e.g., to:

http://www.blogtalkradio.com/baseball-digest-live/2009/10/05/preserving-the-past

See, also, the endorsements of Paul Doherty, Michael Wagner, and Brad Turnow, HistoryOfTheYankees.com - all on file with the Design Commission.

(17) The Committee to Commemorate Old Yankee Stadium successfully presented our case to the Design Commission for preserving Gate 2 on October 26, leading the Commission also to recognize and reject the profound flaws in the Parks Department's preliminary plan. Our written submission, with extensive evidential references, is below, followed by a news account of the Commission's rejection.

http://ccoys.blogspot.com/2009/11/public-design-commission-hearing-102609.html

http://www.nydailynews.com/ny_local/bronx/2009/11/03/2009-11-03_city_keeps_stadium_gate_open_yanks_fans_plan_for_a_memorial_still_in_the_game.html

(18) At this Hearing the Parks Department claimed saving the Gate would cost $10 Million dollars, because - still wrongly claiming - it was "not original." After we revealed a Legacy Bricks plan that could raise such funds - not withstanding emphatic and well-evidenced proof that such an estimate was extravagantly high ("by an order of magnitude or two") - the Department than increased its estimate to over $15 Million, again without any evidence or explanation whatsoever.

Notably, the estimate does not include any savings that would result from not having to demolish and remove the gate from the site where it presently stands.

(19) Subsequently, after extensive Freedom of Information (FOIL) requests (on file with Parks Department), our Committee learned that parks was basing this amount on an unsigned, unattributed, "summary cost estimate." When we pressed for further records to explain what every expert (architects, certified construction cost estimator, government contract experts, construction foremen, ironworkers, et al) unanimously found an outrageous, totally unfounded, and even "laughable" estimate, we were told by Parks lawyers that there were none - no date, no drawings, no data - not even the name, title, experience, or credentials of who performed the alleged estimate, nothing. None were provided to the Design Commission, either.

(20) To help resolve the order of magnitude(s) difference between the Parks Departments cost estimate and those from all of our experts, we repeatedly requested (more than a dozen times) to perform a free-of-charge architectural, structural, and cost, evaluation, of the Gate, by top experts, all experienced and bonded for construction site work. [See Parks Department and City records] Each and every time our requests were either totally ignored, or totally rejected, falsely claiming security and safety prohibitions - while unbonded construction worker girlfriends, baseball players, celebrities, film crews, reporters, etc., visited every part of the construction site.

In contrast, our experts, all bonded and extensively experienced for work on construction sites were all denied access - to the most safe and secure area of the stadium site, indeed one that could even be visited from its outside sidewalk entrance.

(21) As one example of this outrageous obstruction, please see the attached correspondence and speech of architect and Yankee Stadium historian, Philip J. Reina, who our Committee presented to the Parks Department as a free-of-charge independent Gate evaluator.

The Parks Department denied Mr. Reina access for an independent review, and even just the drawings used to conduct the City's so-called cost estimate, because, according to them, IT WOULD POSE A TERRORIST THREAT to the City of New York, if were to do so! [Official reason given directly to Mr. Reina by high ranking Parks Official Frank McCue, on Feb 18, 2010, for withholding stadium drawings.] (Notwithstanding that the Stadium is utterly empty and slated for complete destruction within a month's time - by the City itself - not terrorrists.)

This is how absurdly far the Parks Department has gone to deny an independent cost evaluation for preserving Gate 2.

(22) To further address the alleged cost concern, our Committee, along with HistoryOfTheYankees.com, voluntarily consulted with leading "legacy brick" authorities, most notably the company which did the extremely financially and aesthetically successful and well-received commemorative brick plazas and walkways at Citifield, and many other major sports venues around the country. See, e.g.: http://ccoys.blogspot.com/2009/11/save-gate-commemorative-brick-drive.html. This program could raise over $10 Million dollars, simultaneously enhancing the park's appeal and tourism, and consequently much-needed, year-round revenue for the Yankee Stadium neighborhood. We offered our full and free-of-charge help to make this "SAVE THE GATE COMMEMORATIVE BRICK DRIVE" a major success. Additionally, we put the company who did "Fanwalk" for the Mets directly in touch with the Parks Department.

(21) Despite this aesthetically beautiful, widely-praised and very lucrative, funding opportunity, Parks rejected it because - contrary to all well-established practices and experience at many hundreds of similar sites around the world - "the bricks will wear down" and people will inscribe the bricks with " 'I Hate the Yankees' and things like that." [Parks Deputy Chief of Staff Rebecca Smith, speaking officially for Commissioner Benepe,, at Parks Headquarters, on behalf of the Department on February 1, at a meeting with our Committee.]

(21) Another of our Committee's other cost-saving proposal - the SAVE THE GATE VOLUNTEER WORKER PROGRAM - was unceremoniously shot down by Parks, at that same meeting [February 1, 2010, at the Arsenal, in Central Park] Parks officials informed us that "the unions will never allow us to use volunteer workers." This unattributed charge against the union was not evidenced. In fact, FOIL requests of Parks for any evidence for such a claim reveal that it can not be backed up. It's erroneous and derogatory speculation. Moreover, "the unions" will not "lose" or "gain" any work if the City tears down the Gate. Indeed, many relevant union workers - as well as professionals - are active supporters of all our efforts, including the Volunteer Worker Program, which woulsd eliminate virtually all labor costs associated with gate Preservation.

http://historyoftheyankees.blogspot.com/2009/11/save-gate-volunteer-worker-program.html

Further, this "reason" for rejecting such a beneficial program flies right in the face of City volunteer philosophies and programs:

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/01/18/nyregion/18volunteers.html

http://www.partnershipsforparks.org/

There would be no shortage of volunteers for saving the Gate.

(22) Revealing further error and bullheadedness behind the Department's decision to destroy the Gate (no matter what facts, evidence and reasoning compel its preservation), they also argued that our proposed design "would be an eyesore." This against all independent expert and objective evidence, including universal popular acclaim for the magnificent aesthetics of our proposed Gate monument. See, e.g., the images of the proposal linked below, as well as our 3d video of it - WHICH WE WERE NOT PERMITTED TO SHOW AT THE DESIGN COMMISSION' PUBLIC HEARING - thereby depriving the Commission of a major piece of aesthetic evidence.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JhlmLlYEXl0

http://ultimateyankees.com/CCOYSModelRenderings.htm

(23) Parks also argues that preserving the Gate would take too long. This argument, at best, stems from a severely poor and inaccurate estimate of the Gate's well-documented originality - as well as from the above-cited half-page cost-estimate which wrongly implies the need for far more extensive work than truly necessary, as also does their erroneous argument that huge trusses and pilings are required to preserve the Gate - another claim emphatically rejected by independent construction experts. Furthermore, it completely disregard the fact that the new park will not be opening for almost two years, and all independent experts estimate only a couple of months work, at very most, to save the Gate.

(24) Likewise, the argument that the gate will take up too much space is completely wrong. It will take up only less than 1% of the new park's square footage, in a location where it will not interfere whatsoever with park activities or design.

(25) At Parks Headquarters, Parks officials said their decision was also based on their beliefs that the Gate would "cast big shadows" and "suck up air." No evidence was presented or can be presented for such wild conclusions. First of all the fact that New Yankee Stadium is east of the gate obviates any concerns of morning "shadows", and its location on the extreme east side of the new park eliminates afternoon shadows. In between obviously creates no deleterious shadows, either.

As for "sucking up air", that's unsubstantiated nonsense also.

These headstrong arguments also ignore the fact that the original City plan include 360 degrees of buildings around the park. See attached image of plan with outer shell and extensive seating.

(26) Finally, after publicly making it so well known how closely they've worked the Yankees on all matters pertaining to the new park, the Parks Department have repeatedly indicated that they were motivated to destroy all of Original Yankee Stadium because "the Yankees don't want to save any part of it, so why should we." [Deputy Director Rebecca Smith, February 1, 2010, at The Arsenal meeting to members of the Committee to Commemorate Old Yankee Stadium and HistoryOfTheYankees.com]

Equally outrageous and destructive was the very public pronouncement shocking by Bronx Parks Commissioner Hector Aponte, at the Community Board 4 Meeting on February 18, that "the Yankees want you to go across the street to the new Stadium, they don't want to save anything from the Old Stadium ... The Gate will be gone." He also dramatically (mis/dis)informed the audience of mostly local Bronx residents that Gate 2 was ruled non-original [by the LPC.] with complete certitude that Gate 2 was not original and the (LPC) - thereby fomenting ill-informed local opposition to saving it.

The Design Commission also expressed their belief that the Yankees were against saving any part of the Old Stadium. [For example, at the Public Hearing of October 26, 2010.]

These beliefs, motivations, and pronouncements have made it impossible to get a fair hearing to save a treasure that rightfully belongs to the People of New York, not the Yankees, who already have been generously given a new stadium, and rights to sell treasures of the Old Stadium, at very great expense to the People of New York. If the Steinbrenner-owned Yankees truly don't want to save any part of the Original (pre-Steinbrenner) Stadium, as it appears from their lack of visible support, public reports by the Parks Department, that should have had absolutely no bearing or influence on the City's decision.

__________


[It should be noted as supporting evidence that HistoryOfTheYankees.com, and the SavetheYankeeGate2 Committee [www.savetheyankeegate2.com], among other parties nobly and diligently working to help Save the Gate, have faced nearly identical obstacles and obstructions as those described above. Therefore, they should be contacted for as supporting witnesses to this petition.]

Please also see the Written Submission and Speech of the Committee to Committee to Commemorate Old Yankee Stadium, to the Design Commission, dated and submitted, respectively, on February 18 and 22, 2010.

__________

On the basis of these twenty-six (26) facts, reasons, and supporting evidence - separately and collectively - the Committee to Commemorate Old Yankee Stadium requests an immediate

EMERGENCY MAYORAL INJUNCTION

temporarily protecting Yankee Gate 2 from any deconstruction, sale, demolition, or structural compromise, until all of the above is fully and properly heard, investigated, and adjudicated.

TIME IS OF THE ESSENCE.

Respectfully submitted to the Honorable Mayor Michael Bloomberg, via the Public Design Commission & Parks Department, with the request that the Mayor's Office and Mayor be forwarded this EMERGENCY PETITION immediately upon its receipt:


Tim Reid, on behalf of
The Committee to Commemorate Old Yankee Stadium

Friday, February 19, 2010

IMPORTANT HEARING ON GATE 2 !!! MONDAY, FEBRUARY 22, 2010

This Monday, February 22, 2010, The Committee to Commemorate Old Yankee Stadium, along with other groups supporting the preservation of Gate 2, will be testifying before the New York City Design Commission at City Hall, 3rd Floor, in Manhattan. The hearing is scheduled to begin at 2:30pm. Any in support of Gate 2 should show up and be heard. This will be our last chance to make sure New York City does the right thing and honor Old Yankee Stadium properly.

The updated agenda can be found at:

http://www.nyc.gov/html/artcom/html/review/meetings.shtml

Design Commission
City Hall, Third Floor
New York, NY 10007
Phone: (212) 788-3071
Fax: (212) 788-3086

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Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Now Batting For the Yankees…You!

Now Batting For the Yankees…You!
Imagine walking up to home plate, inside Yankee Stadium. You look up at the scoreboard to see your picture displayed, announcing your entrance. Sound like a dream? On Sunday, June 6, 2010, this can be reality! You will have the chance to dig in at home plate, inside Yankee Stadium, and take your cuts during the 2010 Yankees-Steiner Home Run Classic Event! You will be playing on the very same field the Yankees captured their 27th World Series Title in November!
Enjoy two rounds of batting practice, tour the clubhouse and Monument Park, plus, rub elbows with Yankees Greats on the field, including: Wade Boggs, Darryl Strawberry, Doc Gooden, and Bucky Dent. Food and beverages will be provided and each participant will receive an actual ball used during the BP session, signed by Boggs, Straw, Gooden and Dent.
Reach Brett direct at 914-307-1075 with any questions or to reserve your spot in the Derby. Have a great day!
_________________________________________________________________________
Here’s How it Works:
Date: Sunday, June 6 2010
Time: 8:00 AM – 8:30 PM (Day is broken up into three (3) hour blocks for seven groups. Your time slot will be assigned 2 weeks prior)
Location: Yankee Stadium, Bronx, NY
Participants: Must be 18 and Over (140 total people)
Athletes in Attendance: Boggs, Strawberry, Gooden, & Dent
Includes: Tour of Monument Park and Yankees Clubhouse
Guests: Each participant can bring one guest to watch from the stands
Disclaimers
All sales are final, no cleats are allowed on the field, no autographs will be given at event, participants must use wooden bats (can be brought from home or purchased for event), can bring still cameras. No video cameras will be allowed.
_________________________________________________________________________
2010 Yankee Stadium Home Run Derby Packages
Standard Package: $1,349
The Captain’s Package: $1,775
Derek Jeter Hand Signed 2009 WS Ball Click Here
All-Star Package: $1,849
Includes Yankee Stadium Commemorative Seat Click Here
Core 4 Package: $2,249
Hand Signed (Jeter, Posada, Rivera, Pettite WS Bat) Click Here
MVP Package: $2,449
Includes Yankee Stadium Seat Pair Click Here
Perfect Package: $2,049
Includes Yankees 6-Signature PG Photo (Larsen, Berra, Wells, Posada, Cone, Girardi)
Champions Package: $4,499
Includes 2009 Team Signed WS Baseball Click Here
Group Packages: Ask me how you can reserve a group of 10 or 20! Very Limited!
Brett – (914-307-1075)

Monday, February 15, 2010

Derek Jeter on Sirius XM Radio

SIRIUS XM Radio. They have some video’s of Derek Jeter’s recent visit with Cal and Billy Ripken in our New York City studios. The links can be found below:

On Missing Games: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fkJOBP16ij8

The New Yankee Stadium: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZMoP_PD1EBg

From Torre to Girardi: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hntRw-l9z1k

Yankees trainer Monahan to miss spring training

Yankees trainer Monahan to miss spring training

February 14, 2010 by BY ERIK BOLAND / Erik.Boland@newsday.com

FILE - In this May

Gene Monahan, a popular Yankees’ clubhouse and dugout presence for nearly half a century, will miss Spring training and possibly the start of the regular season to deal with “a significant illness," the team announced Sunday morning.

“I miss not being around my professional family already, but I’m battling,” Monahan said in a statement.

The Yankees said Monahan, 65, the longest tenured athletic trainer in baseball, having served in that capacity the last 38 years for the team, would remain in New York to receive extensive treatment over the next several weeks.

Monahan’s illness was not disclosed. “The New York Yankees have gone above and beyond in this most difficult time,” Monahan said in the statement. “I couldn’t do this alone, but with the support and love of my immediate family, my family within our organization and the dedication and expertise of many fine doctors, I look forward to resuming my role with the team this season.” Monahan – “Geno” to players and just about everyone in the organization – was a bat boy for the team in 1962 and began his training career in 1963 with the Yankees’ Class-D affiliate in Fort Lauderdale. He had worked the past 47 years in Spring Training for the organization. Monahan was inducted into the New York State Athletic Trainers’ Association Hall of Fame in 2007 and last season he received the National Athletic Trainers Association Distinguished Athletic Trainer Award. Steve Donohue, the Yankees’ Assistant Athletic Trainer the past 25 years, will serve as head trainer in Monohan’s absence. It is not yet known who will be Donohue’s assistant.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Gate 2 Rumors Dispelled

Gate 2 Rumors Dispelled


- Why the effort to save Gate 2?

o Old Yankee Stadium has become iconic and the most important stadium in our history. Only the Roman Coliseum is more greatly recognized in terms of historical significance. Old Yankee Stadium has been host to some of the greatest events to ever take place. Along with being residence to the world’s most successful sports franchise ever, the New York Yankees, the stadium has hosted events that included Presidents of the United Stated, visitations and services by several Popes and Cardinals, bared witness to many religious groups and gatherings, hosted championship professional and college football teams, featured some of the great boxers in history, held multiple soccer matches, and been host to many other important events. Some of those include the historic memorial held at the Stadium to honor those lost on 9/11 as well at the celebration for Nelson Mandela to signify the end of apartheid in South Africa. Only Yankee Stadium was chosen to host these historic events. Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig, Joe DiMaggio, Mickey Mantle, Jackie Robinson, Satchel Paige, Elston Howard, Pele’, Joe Louis, Muhammad Ali, and Josh Gibson are just a few names that paved the way for all the great men and women who would venture about this grand stadium. With Gate 2 being the only “original” element of the stadium from the 1920’s, Gate 2 would be the only piece of the stadium that has bared witness to these great events. Gate 2 also encompasses many important historical and architectural elements that adhere to the original stadium. Gate 2 will make a grand entrance for the new ballparks that are to be built on top of the Old Yankee Stadium site. Only Gate 2 can help represent the sheer size and majesty of the original stadium and only Gate 2 can fill the need for the aesthetic shortcomings of the current plan set forth by the New York City Parks Department. Gate 2 will be the only way we can share the marvelous history of this unrivaled and one of a kind stadium with people now, and for many future generations to come.

- Gate 2 will take up large amounts of valuable park space if it is saved!

o Due to Gate 2’s location along 161st Street, saving Gate 2 will have no impact on the amount of park space that is available to the residents of the South Bronx. Gate 2 runs along the sidewalk and will take up “minimal” space at the new park. It will not only make the new ballparks look “majestic”, but will add to the character of the plan proposed by the New York City Parks Department. Only the Gate represent the sheer size and majesty of the original stadium and only Gate 2 can fill the need for the aesthetic shortcomings of the current plan set forth by the New York City Parks Department.

- There are other “original” parts of the stadium that are going to be saved and incorporated into the plan that the Parks Department has submitted. Gate 2 is not needed.

o It is a fact that the current plan set forth by the New York City Parks Department includes ZERO original physical elements or structures from the stadium. It must be noted that the original “frieze”, otherwise known as the “fa├žade”, was completely destroyed in 1973. The metal was sold for scrap to a company in Albany, NY. The fa├žade used in the stadium from 1976 until 2008 was just a concrete replica. The “smokestack”, otherwise known as the “bat”, was constructed during the renovation of the mid 1970’s. It is only decades old. Only Gate 2 is “original” from the 1920’s.

- Gate 2 will cause major delays in constructing the ballparks that are to be built at the old site.

o Saving Gate 2 will have very little impact in terms of delays of building the new ballparks. Due to Gate 2’s location, the gate has no impact on the fields themselves. In fact, local engineers and architects have proven that the gate can be made structurally sound within a matter of days.

- Gate 2 underwent major modifications during the renovations of the mid-1970s. It is not “original”.

o Gate 2 is in fact the ONLY original piece from the 1920’s. When the stadium underwent renovation during the 1970’s, only Gate 2 was sparred due to its location on 161st. Street. Gate 2 is in fact, over 90% original, including the foundation. It is the only physical structure of the stadium that is still true to form and reflects the stadium as it was built in the 1920’s. Gate 2 can very easily, inexpensively, and quickly be touched up to appear exactly like the original.

- I read that there is a “volunteer” program in which works would want to work on Gate 2. Is this true?

o The Committee to Commemorate Old Yankee Stadium has created, developed, and proposed to the City of New York the "SAVE THE GATE Volunteer Worker Program", designed to eliminate all labor costs potentially associated with the saving of Gate 2 at Old Yankee Stadium, and other improvements to the new park design for the Old Yankee Stadium site. You can join with other architects, engineers, construction foremen and laborers, iron workers, cost estimators, lawyers, historians, preservationists, painters, masons, water proofers, safety and security professionals, insurance and contracts experts, among others - all helping to save this irreplaceable treasure. You can help SAVE THE GATE and otherwise transform the Old Yankee Stadium site into the preeminent park its majestic history compels. The more volunteers the better!!! All interested parties should contact the Committee to Commemorate Old Yankee Stadium; providing your name, applicable skill, trade or profession - as well as a brief description of the services and number of days you would like to volunteer. Help make the Old Yankee Stadium site a park worthy of its unparalleled history!!!

- The proposed commemorative bricks that will be used in the park will quickly erode and wear away. Also, fans will purchase bricks that will include inappropriate slogans, using terms such as, “Yankees Stink”, “I Hate the Yankees”, etc.

o The Commemorative Bricks that would be used in the park are constructed of the highest quality materials. These bricks have already been proven time after time to withstand all types of foot traffic, bicycle traffic, cart traffic, erosion, weathering, etc. These types of bricks are currently installed in dozens of ballparks and stadiums throughout the United States, and many have been in place now for over a decade. They have been proven to be more than durable. In fact, many ballparks and stadiums are adding addition “phases” of bricks as their initial “phase” was so successful.

· Each brick submission is carefully screened for inappropriate comments. There is a strict policy in place in which certain criteria must be met. No inappropriate bricks will ever be placed in the ballparks.

- Why did the effort to save Gate 2 begin so late?

o In reality the effort to save Gate 2 has never been late. We have been continually adapting to changes in the city’s plans. The reason that the effort to save just Gate 2 began so late is that we were told through various media outlets that originally the plan was to save the ENTIRE stadium, or a very large portion of it. It was the Mayor, the Bronx Borough President, the Parks Commissioner, and George Steinbrenner who all promised this to and for the citizens of the Bronx. Even up until as late as 2008, there were still reports that major sections of Old Yankee Stadium were going to be saved. As late as the spring of 2008, the tour guides at Old Yankee Stadium were saying “much” of the old stadium was going to be saved. It was only learned that in late 2008, the in fact, the ENTIRE stadium was going to be taken down and destroyed.










Please contact the Committee to Commemorate Old Yankee Stadium:

savethegate@gmail.com