It’s hard to believe all that has happened in Brooklyn over the past 12 months. From the introduction of the Brooklyn Nets, the BAM Fisher, Brooklyn Bridge Park’s Pier 5 sports fields, and of course Barclays Center, to the most devastating storm in modern history and the amazing community response that is leading the borough's recovery—2012 will no doubt live long in our memories.
But Brooklyn (and its Community Foundation) is not about the past (although we are quite proud of our first-ever annual report released last year). We are always looking forward, to what lies ahead for our neighborhoods and our people.
How will we succeed in 2013, and where might we stumble?
This week, we’re sharing a few of our concerns for the coming months. But if we know anything about Brooklyn, we should always expect the unexpected.
- Coastal Recovery and Rebuilding: Brooklyn’s waterfront has been a favorite of real estate developers lately, yet Superstorm Sandy exposed dire threats to coastal living. Will communities rebound and continue to grow along the riverfront and shorefront? How will we be better prepared for the next big storm and how will we protect our most vulnerable residents? What will happen to public housing communities in Red Hook and Coney Island?
- New Faces at Borough Hall and City Hall: For the first time in a decade, Brooklynites will elect a new borough president and a new mayor. Who will replace our Valentine’s Day birthday boys Marty Markowitz and Michael Bloomberg? What issues will they run on, and what will be their vision for Brooklyn and the City’s next decade and beyond?
- Tighter Budgets: As in years past, Brooklyn and the rest of the boroughs can anticipate further debate over cuts to government support for vital community institutions. How will we react? What is the role of philanthropy and private support to ensure that students have access to vibrant after school programs, and that seniors facing isolation and failing health will be able to find companionship and care? How will we use our resources and creativity to bridge the widening funding and income gap?
- The Environment: Brooklyn has the least amount of park space per capita of all the boroughs and is also home to two EPA Superfund sites. What will 2013 bring for Brooklyn’s waterways, open spaces, and urban agriculture initiatives? Will we make bold steps to clean up existing hazards, while advocating for more green space? What will we do to empower all residents, regardless of income or neighborhood, to take the lead in building healthy communities?
What are your concerns—and predictions—for 2013?
Ways You Can Do Good Right Here
WNYC's Annual MLK Celebration
We are proud to celebrate the life of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. in Brooklyn with WNYC's Brian Lehrer and journalist Farai Chidaya on Sunday, January 20th at the Brooklyn Museum. Please join us for an afternoon of discussion and staged readings inspired by A. Peter Bailey’s play, “Malcolm, Martin and Medgar,” an imagined reunion of the slain civil rights icons. 3PM - 5PM. Details and Registration (required).