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Rivera revs into high gear: Stumps, shoots hoops, eats at Veselka, poses with Open NY crew outside Noho development site

BY THE VILLAGE SUN | Dan Goldman is saturating the market with TV ads, but Carlina Rivera has been doing her best to get out the vote the old-school way through on-the-ground campaigning.

The East Village city councilmember spent Sunday — the last day of early voting on the last weekend before primary election day — in an energetic, whirlwind tour of Congressional District 10.

Carlina Rivera, front row third from left, posed with Open New York members, including founder Ben Thypin, first row second from left, and board member and also C.B. 3 member Michelle Kuppersmith, first row third from right, and former Assembly candidate Ryder Kessler, first row far left, outside the Edison parking lot development site on Lafayette Street in Noho. (Rivera campaign)

She shot baskets on the Lower East Side, rode a flatbed campaign truck through Sunset Park, posed with a drag queen outside the Stonewall Inn and met with Open New York members — including the “abundant development” group’s founder and svengali, Ben Carlos Thypin — outside a prime development site in Noho.

Leaving it all on the court on the third-to-last day of campaigning. (Rivera campaign)

Open New York, in fact, is backing the candidate with a “five-figure ad blitz,” according to The Real Deal. The YIMBY group considers Rivera “the only vehemently pro-housing candidate in the race.”

The Real Deal noted, “The endorsement of Rivera, who represents parts of Lower Manhattan in the City Council, in Tuesday’s primary also rewards her support for the Soho/Noho rezoning.”

Carlina Rivera rallied with Chung Seto, center, and the United Democratic Organization political club in Chinatown. (Rivera campaign)

Rivera’s daylong “10 in 10” tour stopped in 10 neighborhoods throughout the district, including Red Hook, where she visited Edward Lunch & Restaurant, on Lorraine Street; Gowanus, where she stopped at superfund site on the Gowanus Canal; Sunset Park, a heavily Hispanic enclave, where she rode on a flatbed truck with Congressmember Nydia Velazquez and state Senator Jessica Ramos and greeted voters at two churches and a supermarket; Park Slope, where she visited Down to Earth Greenmarket; Manhattan’s Chinatown, where she rallied at Confucius Plaza with supporters from the United Democratic Organization, and also made a campaign stop at Hamilton Madison House; the Lower East Side, where Rivera grew up, where she shot hoops at Hamilton Fish Park, on Pitt Street; Noho, where she posed for a photo with Open New York members and supporters outside the Edison parking lot at Great Jones and Lafayette Streets, one of the prime development sites in the contentious Soho/Noho rezoning plan, which Rivera strongly supported; the East Village’s “Little Ukraine,” where the candidate had a meal at Veselka restaurant; and finally the West Village, where she campaigned and talked about L.G.B.T.Q.+ rights outside the Stonewall Inn and Marie’s Crisis piano bar with Councilmember Erik Bottcher and Stonewall Democratic Club members.

Carlina Rivera rallied with members of Coalition for a District Alternative (CoDA), her home political organization. (Rivera campaign)

Opponents of the Soho/Noho rezoning were not surprised to hear that Rivera had visited the Edison parking lot development site and posed with members of Open New York, including its founder, real estate investor Thypin, and the likes of Michelle Kuppersmith, an Open New York board member and Community Board 3 member, plus Ryder Kessler, who ran for Assembly versus Deborah Glick last year with the group’s endorsement.

Carlina Rivera with a drag queen outside of the Stonewall Inn. (Rivera campaign)

Andrew Berman, the executive director of Village Preservation, said of the photo shared by Rivera’s campaign, “Definitely a lot of Open New York members in there. She’s got a lot of support from the upzoning crowd, who just want to see as much torn down and as much built as possible.”

Rivera — like Open New York — has passionately championed the Soho/Noho rezoning, which was approved last year and includes the Noho part of her Council district, maintaining it will generate affordable housing in a “high opportunity” area. However, critics like Berman argue the rezoning does not obligate developers to build affordable housing and that there are loopholes they can use to avoid doing so, resulting in the rezoning mainly being “a gift to developers.”


  1. spencer heckwolf spencer heckwolf August 23, 2022

    I see all the NIMBYs are losing their minds. Happy Election Day!

    • Proud NIMBY Proud NIMBY August 24, 2022

      The only real loser from yesterday’s election was Carlina Rivera.
      The three top contenders supported 100% affordable housing at 5WTC. She did not.
      The two top contenders support preservation of the Elizabeth Street Garden. She did not.
      The three top contenders were opposed to the East River Park destruction. She was not.
      Coming in 4th place is a reflection of the disdain her constituents have for her.
      Oh, wait. There was another big loser, Open NY and their comrades at that real estate PAC, who spent six figures trying to weaken Niou.
      The fools, the fools. Savvy Downtown voters saw right through it.
      Outsiders’ money not only was wasted but produced the opposite of its intended effect.
      What goes around, comes around. Ain’t karma a bitch. ROTFL

  2. savenycjobs savenycjobs August 22, 2022

    One group Rivera cannot pose with are small business owners. She is responsible for the greatest betrayal of business owners in the Council. Rivera willfully killed the Jobs Survival Act that would give all her merchants 10-year leases and no property taxes. Instead, she sponsored the lobby-created bill that gives the tenants no right to renew the lease and keeps the status quo for the landlords. Records matter, and her record of throwing her merchants under the bus for her own career is shameful. Any voter who respects their neighborhood small business owners should never vote for Rivera.

  3. Gojira Gojira August 22, 2022

    Yeah, this is the most she’s been seen in her district since she got elected. Praying for a Dan Goldman victory.

    • Huff and Puff Huff and Puff August 23, 2022

      Gojira, perhaps you’re confused. Dan Goldman is just as dangerous as Carlina Rivera. Aside from his personal wealth, aside from his equivocations on the right to choose, he is taking money from developers (the worst NYC developer, Steve Ross, friend of Trump), and he’s basically said he would give developers much freer rein than they already have.

      • JS JS August 24, 2022

        Carlina is dangerous because she reneged on her campaign promises. We had 4 years of a prevaricator in the White House — we don’t need another one in Congress.

  4. Lora Tenenbaum Lora Tenenbaum August 22, 2022

    It is telling that Carlina chooses to stand in front of a lot, whose zoning, for which she pushed, now allows to hold a big-box store, an office building or yet another fake museum. Sure, if they choose, the property owner can build Mandatory Inclusionary Housing, but that just bakes in institutional racism, allowing only about 1 affordable unit for every 3 market-rate units. And “affordable” can include “affordable for people who earn more than $100K.” With all the carve-outs, the owner can even build luxury units only, so long as it’s under 25K square feet. What they cannot build are artists lofts. They are no longer as of right. No wonder the neoliberal YIMBYs love her. They are among the other developers bankrolling her campaign.

    • Josh P. Josh P. August 23, 2022

      Do you think it would be better if it stayed a parking lot?

    • I-----m I-----m August 24, 2022

      perfectly stated, lora!

  5. Anonymous Anonymous August 22, 2022

    Please please do not vote for Carlina Rivera if you want to preserve any shred of the East Village or Lower East Side be it building or park. She and the real estate industry are one. Vote ABC (anyone but Carlina).

  6. fuelgrannie fuelgrannie August 22, 2022

    These YIMBYs all look alike but that’s not Will Thomas at the far right of Carolina’s Open New York photo. It is instead the infamous Spencer Heckwolf: He who threatens the elderly at community board meetings

    A vote for Rivera is a vote for Sven Carlos Thypin: This city deserves better

  7. Georgette Fleischer Georgette Fleischer August 22, 2022

    The SoHo/NoHo rezoning is a gift to developers, the Tech Hub — on which Rivera reneged on campaign promises to her constituents — was a gift to developers, the unnecessary destruction of East River Park, including the demolition of hundreds of mature shade and oxygen-giving trees, was a gift to developers, and the threatened destruction of the Elizabeth Street Garden is a gift to developers.

    Yuh-Line Niou is a gift to her constituents, including the most underserved. Not a PINO (progressive in name only), like Rivera, Niou is a true progressive and our best hope for the future of the 10th Congressional District.

    • John K. John K. August 23, 2022

      The district can’t be frozen in amber for the pleasure of the minority of its residents who are property owners. Development isn’t “just for developers””—we need housing! Also, these weren’t ancient redwoods in East River Park; they were planted a few decades ago, and we’ll soon have far more trees in a far better park. I appreciate that Rivera was willing to take heat and think forward.

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