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  #301  
Old Posted Feb 22, 2019, 1:47 AM
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http://westviewnews.org/2019/02/city...dges-proposal/

City Council Announces Legal Action for Public Review of Two Bridges Proposal


February 4, 2019


Quote:
The existing deed restriction at one of three properties at the center of the dispute, meant to ensure housing for low-income people with disabilities and the elderly in perpetuity, was never disclosed by DCP or the developers. The potential lifting of this restriction is akin to the city’s disastrous decision to lift a deed at the former Rivington House in the same Council District in 2015, allowing affordable housing to be converted to market-rate. The lifting of the deed would negatively impact a community struggling to remain affordable for New Yorkers, the court papers allege.

“I thought the city had learned its lesson from Rivington, but it appears that would be too much to ask for since it is making the same mistake again with Two Bridges” said City Council Speaker Corey Johnson.

“First the Administration says that massive new development does not need a ULURP, then it slips out that there’s an affordable housing deed restriction for a portion of this development that they never mentioned”, said Manhattan Borough President Gale A. Brewer.
Quote:
Council Member Margaret S. Chin said “The proposed project will lift a deed restriction intended to reserve housing in perpetuity for ‘elderly and handicapped persons of low income’. The lifting of this deed restriction, coupled with the huge financial rewards for the developers, darkly mirrors the circumstances around the sale of Rivington House in 2015. Yet here we are again, with a project undertaken in a non-transparent way and that will almost assuredly provide windfall profits to developers at the expense of working New Yorkers.“
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  #302  
Old Posted Feb 22, 2019, 3:17 AM
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They talk about windfall profits to developers at the expense of New Yorkers, but when the time comes for a rezoning, so the developers can add more units up to and including affordable units (that would help those needing housing), they shun that.

Its just more nitpicking of the details or undisclosed criteria in order to delay the inevitable.
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  #303  
Old Posted Mar 23, 2019, 1:59 AM
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I am shocked by this....



https://www.boweryboogie.com/2019/03...n-two-bridges/

Neighborhood Group Sues the City to Stop New Towers in Two Bridges





March 22nd, 2019


Quote:
Tenants and other community members who have been fighting four luxury megatowers in the streets will now bring their fight to court, represented by attorneys from the Asian American Legal Defense Fund, in a lawsuit aimed at stopping the towers outright.

The City Planning Commission’s December 5 approval of the developments on the Two Bridges waterfront pose an existential threat to working class communities in Chinatown and the Lower East Side. They are also illegal – violating the zoning that is meant to protect against out-of-scale development and environmental damage.

These megatowers will trigger displacement, as skyrocketing property values will encourage landlords to harass rent-stabilized residents out of their homes and rent commercial space to higher bidders. The shadows of these massive developments will reach past the Bowery, robbing an entire neighborhood of over five hours of sunlight.

More immediately, construction on all four sites is scheduled to be simultaneous. The building of the Extell tower was enough to cause cracks in the foundation of the neighboring Mitchell-Lama building, in addition to drilling and dust affecting the health and quality of life throughout the community. Two of the towers will be built directly against Section 8 buildings, which the same developers purchased a few years ago. The construction alone will force some neighbors into fleeing their community in order to preserve their health and safety.

The lawsuit is grounded in this environmental injustice and complete disregard for the protective zoning that is supposed to preserve this community of working class and immigrant New Yorkers. The developers’ Environmental Impact Study both glossed over the severe ramifications of their plans, and outright ignored the irreversible displacement they would cause. Once a community is jackhammered apart, it cannot be put back together.

Mayor Bill de Blasio’s City Planning Commission is condemning the Lower East Side and Chinatown with its approval of these skyscrapers. LESON unites voices in demanding no towers to be built, and no compromises to be cut with real estate developers and other special interests.
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  #304  
Old Posted Mar 23, 2019, 2:46 AM
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I take it they won't get very far...?
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  #305  
Old Posted Mar 23, 2019, 3:15 AM
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Originally Posted by Zapatan View Post
I take it they won't get very far...?
They shouldn't, but the war on skyscrapers in New York has only heated up. Anything is possible.
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  #306  
Old Posted Mar 23, 2019, 10:42 AM
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The opposition to this is just crazy to me.
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  #307  
Old Posted Mar 23, 2019, 2:56 PM
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The judge needs to dismiss this rubbish lawsuit.
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  #308  
Old Posted Mar 28, 2019, 4:15 AM
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A joke of an opinion piece.



https://www.thevillager.com/2019/03/...wer-east-side/

OPINION: Architecture of hell on the Lower East Side





March 15, 2019
BY LYNN ELLSWORTH

Ellsworth is chairperson, Tribeca Trust, and president, Human-Scale NYC


Quote:
Among the many horrors of overdevelopment we face in Lower Manhattan, the most heartbreaking has to be the vision of a dystopic future seen in the renderings of a series of projects slated for Two Bridges. These megaprojects would radically and irrevocably alter this Lower East Side neighborhood along the East River, between the Williamsburg and Brooklyn Bridges.

One tower is already up, four more are to come. You know the drill: They are over-scaled, corporate, anonymous and painful to look at. And they’re packed to the gills with private amenities designed to allow the wealthy to separate themselves from the rest of us 24/7, 365 days a year.
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These towers fail on all counts and portend a terrible future for New York: oligarchic, dark, anti-urban, turned inward, with the wealthy getting around in armored SUVs at ground level, and flying around from private helipads the rest of the time, serviced by Amazon drones right to their private, terraced parks 40 stories up. Another injustice is that the architects and developers of these Lower East Side sites made a terrible mess that they inflict on us, and then they all make out like bandits! For the rest of us there will be less than nothing: blockage of views to the river, shadows, residential displacement and no direct sunlight at street level all day long, all year-round. That is already the case for many of the streets in Midtown already, so why keep repeating that mistake?

These glassy tower complexes, just like at Hudson Yards, like Long Island City, Downtown Brooklyn, Essex Crossing, Domino Sugar Factory, Sunnyside, East Harlem and Yorkville are the architecture of death — death of a city, death of what urban greatness we once had, death of a human-scale world. These towering edifices are cold as tombs, hateful to the street, without history, untouchable, without humanity, and way, way too tall.
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Fighting these towers also means fighting a vision of the city that we don’t want, and arguing for a human-scale alternative. It also means building electoral power and coalitions among those who are sick of the way real estate power rules everything in New York City. So don’t just shield your eyes in sorrow when you glance down to the Extell Tower From Hell that is complete. Go to www.humanscale.nyc and take the voter pledge not to support any candidates who take real estate money. That’s a first step that will connect you to one of the many resistance networks in the city.
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“Office buildings are our factories – whether for tech, creative or traditional industries we must continue to grow our modern factories to create new jobs,” said United States Senator Chuck Schumer.
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  #309  
Old Posted Mar 28, 2019, 1:20 PM
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^Hilarious. Written with all the naivete of a high school newspaper.
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  #310  
Old Posted May 4, 2019, 3:24 PM
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Some additional documents on the project: https://courbanize.com/projects/247cherry/information

Community presentation: Older but a refresher. I forget if it was posted before.

1) https://res.cloudinary.com/courbaniz...zyvoybe5v0s6r7
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  #311  
Old Posted May 4, 2019, 3:25 PM
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I checked the DOB today, and nothing current as of now in terms of filings.
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  #312  
Old Posted Jun 6, 2019, 4:13 PM
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https://citylimits.org/2019/06/06/tw...o-power-ulurp/

Two Bridges Foes Win a Round in Suit Over Mayoral Power


By Sadef Ali Kully
June 6, 2019


Quote:
A Supreme Court justice presiding over multiple lawsuits concerning a large-scale development plan in Two Bridges listened to each party for hours in a packed courtroom Wednesday but reserved judgement on a case challenging the power of the mayor to decide when a project can escape public review.

In a major win for advocacy groups, the judge ruled that a temporary restraining order against the Two Bridges development would stay in place.
Quote:
A significant element of the controversy over the Two Bridges proposals is that the de Blasio administration has determined they represent only a “minor modification” of an existing special permit on the parcels and therefore do no require a full Uniform Land Use Review Procedure, or ULURP.

One lawsuit comes from Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer in tandem with the City Council. Different groups of Chinatown and Lower East Side community groups have filed three separate lawsuits against the city and the Two Bridges developers group.

The City Council and Brewer lawsuit contends the City Planning Commission’s “minor modification” analysis was incorrect and the approval of special permits in the area “demands” a public review.
Quote:
On Wednesday, Supreme Court Justice Arthur Engoron issued a continued temporary restraining order against the Two Bridges development project until August 2 so he could consider the case further.

The lawyers from the City and the developers for the Two Bridges project said that there was no need for a ULURP process because the development project did not require changing the zoning of the area. “The size of the buildings do not matter here,” said Janice Mac Avoy, representing the group behind the development project. “Although the height is significant, it does not matter because that is what the zoning allowed here in the LSRD.”

Justice Engoron responded, “But the size here is an 800-pound gorilla,” he said. The quiet room let out a ripple of snickers.

Mac Avoy continued with the same argument that the ULURP has nothing to do with the size of the development because the project is complying with the underlying zoning therefore making it exempt from public review. (The developers did agree to participate in a joint environmental review and there were public hearings as part of that, but by avoiding ULURP the de Blasio administration and developers avoid the possibility of a “no” vote in the CIty Council that would kill the project.)
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  #313  
Old Posted Jun 8, 2019, 6:50 PM
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I hope this doesn't ruin the prospects of 247 Cherry, and the other LES towers. A NIMBY victory here, and with the other LES towers would be a major blow for the areas transformation. I hope its just blowing smoke, and just delays, but nothing fatal that would kill the prospects.
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  #314  
Old Posted Jun 8, 2019, 6:55 PM
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It wouldn't be a victory either way for the NIMBYs because the site is already zoned for large development. What they would lose is a large number of affordable units.
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“Office buildings are our factories – whether for tech, creative or traditional industries we must continue to grow our modern factories to create new jobs,” said United States Senator Chuck Schumer.
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  #315  
Old Posted Jun 9, 2019, 10:04 AM
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25-30% affordable units overall, or still get sizable towers with 0 % affordable component? It should be a no-brainer, but for whatever reasons, the NIMBYs will only screw those less able to afford rents, not the already well off. They don't seem to care, though.
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  #316  
Old Posted Jun 10, 2019, 4:47 PM
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Cherry St is like the least pedestrian friendly street in Manhattan. These towers should help the area. I don't get the opposition.
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  #317  
Old Posted Jun 11, 2019, 1:32 AM
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Once again, New York Shitty rears its head!

We demolish beautiful buildings (Hotel Pennsylvania, 417 Park, 5-9 East 51st, 16 East 52nd, any number of entire blocks on the UES) ...

... for trash ("Facebook Tower" (just wait till Congress breaks it up!), 417 Park, Tower Fifth) ...

... While proposals to build on some of the city's ugliest, least historically significant, vacant, pedestrian-unfriendly lots (247 Cherry and its neighbors) ...

... Get derailed.

WTF.
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  #318  
Old Posted Jun 11, 2019, 2:37 AM
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I don’t care about history, them old buildings only look good up close anyways, as long as it’s tall and adds density to this skyline. I love seeing my skyline from a plane, across the river in Jersey, from Brooklyn, Queens or the Bronx. They should tear down Saint Paul’s Chapel and Barclay tower and Build 5 megatalls packed together. And if you’re broke and can’t afford Manhattan move out. I’m tired of these broke NIMBYs depicting our skyline and economy.
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  #319  
Old Posted Jun 12, 2019, 5:06 AM
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https://www.crainsnewyork.com/editor...responsibility

Tower foes' disregard for zoning laws is the height of irresponsibility
"You can't do this just because zoning allows it," a judge said. Yes, you can.





The Editors
June 11 2019


Quote:
Building a big project in New York City is a major challenge, which is one reason our housing costs are so high: Developers have not been able to keep up with demand. But one thing they have always been able to count on is that if they comply with a site's zoning, they can build without politicians' approval.

Suddenly that's in jeopardy.

Four residential towers planned for a Lower East Side enclave known as Two Bridges comply with the area's high-density zoning, which has been in place since 1972. As such, they require approval from only the City Planning Commission before they get permits from the Department of Buildings to start putting shovels in the ground.

City Planning granted that approval—happily, because the developers agreed to make 692 of the 2,000 apartments affordable. That's four times as many cut-rate units as the zoning requires, making this the largest addition of unsubsidized affordable housing in memory. For good measure, the developers agreed to spend $15 million creating two playgrounds and a park, $40 million to upgrade the East Broadway subway station and $12.5 million to repair the Housing Authority's Two Bridges complex, among other benefits.
Quote:
But all that wasn't enough for Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer and local City Councilwoman Margaret Chin.

Had the projects required a zoning change, Brewer would have been able to weigh in formally, giving her leverage to shape the plans, and the council would have had the power to scuttle them. So they sued the city, saying the developments should be subject to the public-review process, known as Ulurp, regardless of its compliance with current zoning.

That would be like making a motorist stop at every green light until a police officer negotiates a toll and lets him pass. Just imagine how long it would take to drive anywhere and you can see why development in this town would be crippled and costs would soar under such a system.
Quote:
What's worse, last week a judge agreed with the plaintiffs, saying he "just can't believe" towers of such heights—from 724 to 1,008 feet—can avoid Ulurp. "You can't just do this because the zoning allows it," he said in extending a restraining order.

If he makes it permanent, reversal on appeal would be likely. But in the interim a legal project is in limbo and Nimbyists are empowered to stall others with similarly absurd suits.

Council Speaker Corey Johnson signed off on this suit, a power grab the council is attempting in the City Charter revision process.

Fighting desperately needed housing is selfish, but if Brewer and Chin dislike the zoning, they can try to change it. Disregarding it, however, cannot be an option.
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“Office buildings are our factories – whether for tech, creative or traditional industries we must continue to grow our modern factories to create new jobs,” said United States Senator Chuck Schumer.
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  #320  
Old Posted Jun 12, 2019, 10:24 AM
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Then what's the point of zoning...?
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