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As politicians begin taking more seriously the possible construction of a sea barrier, Gov. Cuomo will travel to Washington today seeking over $40 billion in aid -- a large chunk of which will go towards protection from future storms. The Washington Post backed up similar thinking, calling big spending on preparation well worth it. But of course, planning will be difficult, and it's much more complicated than just walling of the city from nature. Future development should come into consideration; like new plans for Flushing Meadows Park in Queens. Some say the park's role as natural buffer against flooding would be compromised by the proposed stadiums and malls. And then there's the gas pipeline planned for construction under The Rockaways. Environmentalists say flooding in the area threatens its stability.

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The Central Park Conservancy has received a $100 million donation by hedge fund manager John Paulson. Half the money will help finance maintenance and the rest will pay for capital improvements. Parks have become major major beneficiaries of philanthropy, but this is the largest donation to a park ever, many say. The park's annual operating budget is $46 million. Paulson rose to fame by betting against subprime mortgages in 2007.

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It took just 40 years to get it done, but now the city has a new park, dedicated to no less than President Franklin D. Roosevelt.

Mayor Michael Bloomberg joined former President Bill Clinton and Gov. Andrew Cuomo at today's dedication of the Franklin D. Roosevelt Four Freedoms Park, which looks out at the United Nations from the East River.

Bloomberg said the state park, designed by American architect Louis I. Kahn, "will stand forever as a monument to the man who brought us through the Great Depression and brought us victory over great evil."

Roosevelt famously delivered a speech on Jan. 6, 1941, as the country was on the precipice of entering World War II, envisioning a world based on four freedoms: freedom of speech and expression; freedom of worship; freedom from want; and freedom of fear.

The park at Roosevelt Island was announced in 1973, but the project languished for years following the city's financial meltdown. It was picked up 30 years later by former Ambassador to the United Nations William vanden Heuvel and the Four Freedoms Park Conservancy.

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