Asphalt Green Protest Campaign Under Way

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Asphalt Green, the recreational facility on East 91st Street, has formally launched a campaign to protest the construction of the E. 91st Street Marine Transfer Station (MTS) in Yorkville, a facility that could become its new neighbor within a few years.

Asphalt Green is developing a direct mail and outdoor ad campaign that highlights the health risks of the MTS. The campaign is based on independent scientific research that they say projects future diesel and exhaust emissions could reach dangerous levels, in violation of EPA standards, for children playing at Asphalt Green.

The campaign targets residents who live between 59th and 116th streets and from Fifth Avenue to the East River. Asphalt Green's Board of Directors will match gifts to the campaign up to $200,000. The 'anti-dump' campaign aims for $500,000 for its August launch.

According to the sports and fitness center's numbers, 31,000 children utilize Asphalt Green's facilities every year. Overall, the center serves 56,000 children, senior citizens, and veterans annually from all five boroughs. The proposed MTS station bisects the Asphalt Green facility. It is expected to be ten stories tall, with its access ramp 11 feet from Asphalt Green's entrance.

Andrew Nussbaum, chairman of Asphalt Green's Board of Directors, said "Our campaign is a call to action for all New Yorkers to learn the truth and to join the more than 20,000 other New Yorkers who have already voiced their opposition to this dangerous dump. We have spent a great deal of time and resources to research the impact of the dump and to get an independent analysis of its health and safety implications. There has to be a better way to deal with the trash, to support borough equity and to improve the air quality in low-income neighborhoods everywhere."

Said Carol Tweedy, executive director of Asphalt Green, "No child in any borough should be exposed to the levels of toxic exhaust that will be spewing only feet from a sports field used by children of all socioeconomic backgrounds from all around the City. We strongly urge a detailed reevaluation of the MTS station and a comprehensive review of how environmentally hazardous waste haulage impacts all children in the City. There are laws against putting a private trash facility this close to schools and play areas. The City should not be able to do so either. Simply put, dumps don't belong where children play ? in any borough."

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