HDC's Best of 2008: Packed Preservation Conference Reveals Lack of Preservation in PlaNYC 2030!

HDC’s Annual Preservation Conference this past March featured keynote speaker Rohit Aggarwala, director of the New York City Department of Long-term Planning & Sustainability and a key architect of the Bloomberg administration’s PlaNYC 2030. After a full presentation by Mr. Aggarwala on the Plan’s major tenets, HDC convened a group of professional preservation advocates to respond to its relative omission of preservation practices. With HDC Executive Director Simeon Bankoff as moderator, respondents Peg Breen, president of the New York Landmarks Conservancy; Jonathan Peters, professor at the College of Staten Island; and Anthony C. Wood, author of Preserving New York: Winning the Right to Protect a City’s Landmarks, critiqued the city’s proposal point by point, highlighting numerous ignored and misunderstood opportunities for protecting and reusing local historic resources. Subsequent panels at the conference addressed specific opportunities for preservation throughout the boroughs. Read more about the day’s events here.

Moving forward, the program for HDC’s upcoming 2009 Preservation Conference will take a more detailed look at the integral intersection between preservation advocacy and civic engagement. So many neighborhood-driven campaigns require that advocates work with elected representatives and officials from city, state and federal agencies, both in partnerships and as individual parties with separate primary interests. This year’s program will feature a number of preservationists, planners, representatives from government agencies, legal experts and elected officials who will help guide attendees on how to better engage in the political process and achieve their goals. Check your mailbox for full conference details in early 2009 and in the meantime be sure to save March 6-8, 2009 on your calendars!

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