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Invoice Woods, New York City Planner and ‘Hero of the Harbor,’ Dies at 78 – New York Occasions


Though these tasks have been initiated by numerous businesses, Mr. Woods helped coordinate them and mobilized private and non-private constituencies to revitalize the waterfront.

“We’ve got to start out from the premise that almost 600 miles of waterfront is large enough to accommodate all of the makes use of this metropolis wants,” he informed The New York Occasions in 1992, when the administration of Mayor David N. Dinkins launched a 267-page manifesto to redevelop the derelict waterfront, which shippers had largely deserted for New Jersey and different ports with area that would accommodate containers.

“There are some locations on this metropolis which are pure and must be utterly protected,” Mr. Woods stated. “There are others the place business exists and must be inspired. What we’ve got tried to do is determine which is which and work out a method to assist the method.”

In 2011, with Mr. Woods nonetheless director of waterfront planning, Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg unveiled what his administration referred to as its Imaginative and prescient 2020 Complete Waterfront Plan, an formidable reaffirmation of the town’s dedication to shorefront improvement and to increase its proposed enhancements past the water’s edge and into the harbor itself, together with dredging, accommodating big container ships and relieving vehicular congestion by means of ferry service.

The water, stated Amanda Burden, director of metropolis planning on the time, ought to turn into the town’s “sixth borough.”

Since 2002, the town has acquired almost 400 acres of waterfront land for brand spanking new parks and rezoned greater than 700 acres of largely vacant or underutilized waterfront land for brand spanking new housing and public waterfront entry.

“Invoice Woods,” Ms. Burden stated this week, “was a real visionary.”

Wilbur Leonard Woods was born on July 22, 1938, in Birmingham, Ala., to Frank M. Woods, a lodge supervisor, and the previous Josephine Roberts.

Along with his spouse, he’s survived by a daughter, Leigh Woods Silver; a stepson, Daniel Freedman; 4 grandchildren; and a sister, Rhoda Woods Reyner.

Mr. Woods earned a bachelor’s diploma from Cornell College’s School of Structure and later taught at Hunter School of the Metropolis College of New York and on the Pratt Institute in Brooklyn.

He joined the Division of Metropolis Planning in 1972 and served as director of the Staten Island workplace from 1974 to 1977 and of the Brooklyn workplace from 1977 to 1989. He headed the division’s Waterfront and Open Area Division till 2011.

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