Court stops work in Union Square park

April 23, 2008 7:03:19 AM PDT
A $20 million renovation of a popular Manhattan park is on hold after neighbors challenged provisions for a private restaurant in the public space. A judge halted work Monday at Union Square Park at least until an April 28 hearing. It could result in a longer injunction.

The plan includes redesigning two playgrounds and adding a restaurant in a pavilion.

State Assemblyman Richard Gottfried and other opponents say the city shouldn't let a privately owned restaurant take up public recreation space in the densely developed neighborhood.

City lawyer Ramin Pejan says officials are confident the project is a worthy one and the city will prevail in court.