Monday, April 23, 2012

More Than 250 Attend Sustainable Playland Fundraiser at Coveleigh Club

More than 250 people turned out Saturday night for Sustainable Playland Inc.’s 2012 annual fundraiser held at the Coveleigh Club. The group came to show their support and learn more about the plan that proposes to reinvent the struggling Westchester County-owned park.

Dan Biederman, a pioneer in the field of privately funded urban and public space management, spoke to the audience about the Sustainable Playland plan. Biederman is the co-founder of Grand Central Partnership, 34th Street Partnership, and Bryant Park Corporation, and three Business Improvement Districts (BIDs) operating in midtown Manhattan.

Sustainable Playland also unveiled a 10-minute video that provided audience members with an understanding of the history of the iconic park, its current woes, and the SPI vision that promises to make the park sustainable.

The Sustainable Playland plan is one of three finalists recommended by an advisory committee selected by Westchester County Executive Robert Astorino's office.  The plan takes a holistic approach to create a year-round destination that will unlock the full recreational, environmental and entertainment value of Playland while respecting the historical integrity of the Park.

Dan Biederman speaks to audience during the SPI fundraiser.
The SPI plan includes year-round activities such as an improved ice casino, indoor and outdoor athletic fields, a reduced amusement area that focuses on the historically designated rides such as the famed Dragon Coaster, a great lawn fronting on Long Island Sound and a far more environmentally sustainable approach to the entire 100-acre park.  The public-private partnership approach is built along the lines of the Central park Conservancy and  top operators have been lined up to work with SPI under the direction of one of the nation’s most highly regarded park management companies.

The SPI plan offers a return to the founding concept of an elegant park with amusement rides, not an amusement park.  The approach is “sustainable” financially, environmentally and programmatically and gets the government out of the amusement park operating business.

You can learn more about the Sustainable Playland plan by visiting