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3, just a few hours after being elected 48–1 as New York’s new City Council Speaker, it made sense that Corey Johnson would want to celebrate with friends.And he did — by heading over to Mount Sinai West for the monthly full board meeting of Community Board 4 (CB4). I walk in sweatpants and a baseball cap down the street.He also plans to set up a centralized way that the City Council as a body can serve as a resource for individual councilmembers to get problems in their districts resolved through these agencies.This means pushing legislation, protecting tenants through the land use process, using oversight powers with individual agencies through budget hearings, and ensuring budget resources are allocated to city agencies that work on these specific issues. 2016: Matt Green with a model of a raised pedestrian crosswalk, one of the winning projects from District 3’s first year of Participatory Budgeting.9], we aren’t going to lose focus on district issues even as we deal with citywide issues.We’re excited to have more resources and staff to address pressing needs of the district.” They will soon announce more about the increased resources for the district office.Part of this is his efforts to preserve and expand the Special West Chelsea District, running from W. between Ninth and Tenth Aves.; West 24th and 25th St. “I’m also really committed to working with Ken Lustbader [co-director of NYC LGBT Historic Sites], who has done a great job at landmarking individual LGBT landmarks in both Chelsea and Greenwich Village, and across the city.The mayor a few years ago landmarked Stonewall, and Julius’ bar needs that status as well, because of its history.” Saying he would need to first consult with building owners, he rattled off a list of perspective sites for landmarking, including the brownstone in the West 20s where GMHC was founded, the building on W. that is the only known site of the Underground Railroad in Manhattan (located within the Lamartine Place Historic District), and lesbian poet Audre Lorde’s home in Staten Island.
| File photo by Sean Egan PRESERVING OUR HISTORY | Following in Quinn’s footsteps, Johnson has worked hard during his time in City Council to ensure that District 3’s historic landmarks are protected. And he has found success: The third council district now has more landmarked locales than just about any other district in Manhattan, including the Chelsea Historic District, Gansevoort Market Historic District, Greenwich Village Historic District, the South Village Historic District, the Charlton-King-Vandam Historic District, and part of the So Ho-Cast Iron Historic District.
Now, Johnson is the first leader of the 51-member City Council who is an openly gay, HIV-positive man.
But Johnson is not the first speaker to hail from the West Side Manhattan district.
His openly-lesbian predecessor, Christine Quinn, served the area for three terms before being elected to City Council Speaker, a position of power in NYC second only to the mayor. 9 interview at City Hall with NYC Community Media papers including The Villager, Gay City News and Manhattan Express, Johnson assured Chelsea Now that his first obligation remained to his constituents, the 170,000 people who live in District 3, saying he would “be a very regular presence at community board meetings, block association meetings, tenant association meetings, and local events.” District 3 encompasses West So Ho, Hudson Square, Greenwich Village, the West Village, the Meatpacking District, Chelsea, Flatiron, Hell’s Kitchen, Clinton, a little bit of the Upper West Side, Columbus Circle, Times Square, the Theatre District, the Garment District, Hudson Yards, The High Line, Hudson River Park, Penn Station, Moynihan Station, the Port Authority Bus Terminal, The Javits Center, the Whitney Museum, and Sheridan Square.
“It’s a dynamic district, a big district, and I think it has bigger challenges in some ways, because while each district represents 170,000 constituents, the average daily influx to my district brings that up to 2 million people,” said Johnson.