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  #61  
Old Posted Jun 11, 2017, 5:15 PM
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PLANS FOR UPPER WEST SIDE’S TALLEST BUILDING ON HOLD AS CITY REVIEWS CHALLENGE BY NEIGHBORS



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There will be no further permits issued for the controversial building being planned for 200 Amsterdam Avenue until the legal challenge to its zoning lot is resolved. What would be the tallest building on the Upper West Side — an expected 668 feet — is now on hold.

WSR learned this from George Janes, the urban planner who drafted the challenge. Janes learned of it in an email from the Department of Buildings, shared with him by a NY1 reporter.

“This is different from a formal Stop Work order, where an applicant has a permit, and work on that permit is legally halted,” Janes explained. “Here, since this is still early in the process, the DOB has said that the issuance of further permits is halted until the Challenge is resolved. The only permits they have are for the site prep work, and that work is largely done. So they can continue to be on site, but the work they are allowed to do is very limited.”

“The action is notable,” Janes concluded. “Challenges don’t normally impact DOB’s permit issuance process until they are resolved. I expect that this will mean that we will get an answer to our Challenge sooner, rather than later.”
SJP Properties, which is partnering with Mitsui Fudosan America to build the building, sent us a statement expressing its disappointment.

“We have employed the industry’s leading legal, zoning, architectural and engineering professionals to ensure, with meticulous attention to detail, that 200 Amsterdam conforms to all zoning regulations. We are confident that we will soon commence construction.

It is disappointing that this baseless action has jeopardized hundreds of jobs, and millions of dollars of property taxes that are used to support vital community services for all residents of the city, including those of the Upper West Side.

The design of 200 Amsterdam, including its height, is based on zoning that dates back to 1987 and was granted written approval by the boards of all eight buildings comprising the entirety of the Lincoln Towers community. Furthermore, three other developments within the same Lincoln Towers zoning block were approved by the Department of Buildings and built using zoning development rights that are identical to those being employed by 200 Amsterdam. The developments are 200 West End Avenue, the rental building at 166 Amsterdam Avenue, and the Lincoln Square Synagogue at 180 Amsterdam Avenue.”
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http://www.westsiderag.com/2017/06/1...e-by-neighbors
     
     
  #62  
Old Posted Jun 11, 2017, 7:24 PM
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  #63  
Old Posted Jun 12, 2017, 3:36 AM
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  #64  
Old Posted Jul 13, 2017, 12:56 AM
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http://gothamist.com/2017/07/12/work..._sides_pla.php

Work Halted On What Would Have Been Upper West Side's Tallest Tower

BY DAVID COLON
JUL 12, 2017


Quote:
Last time we checked in on 200 Amsterdam Avenue, a planned 668-foot tower that would be the tallest building on the Upper West Side once completed, Upper West Side residents were calling foul based on what they said was a "gerrymandered" lot that allowed the building to rise to its planned height. The Department of Buildings has now found that objection persuasive enough to halt work on the building until a longer review can be completed.

"I believe the zoning challenge shows clearly that the proposal does not add up in terms of open space," Council Member Helen Rosenthal, who represents the district where 200 Amsterdam Avenue would go up, said in a statement praising the DOB's decision. "This accounting should have been included from the very start."

The DOB slapped the building with a Notice of Intent to Revoke, according to Rosenthal's press release, and work will only continue if the building passes a full audit investigating whether the proposed development conforms to the city's Open Space requirements.

The challenge to the building's construction centered on whether or not the air rights from a number of nearby lots acquired by developers SJP Properties and Mitsui Fudosan America add enough square footage for 200 Amsterdam Avenue to go from 10,000 square feet to 100,000 square feet. Rosenthal, Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer and some neighborhood activists didn't think so. One activist in particular, Olive Freud of the Committee for Sound Environmental Development, hired urban planner George Janes to study the lot, which led to the discovery of the wonky shape of 200 Amsterdam's lot.

"We need to stop rewarding developers who play games with lot shapes and sizes to achieve results that plainly shouldn’t be possible under the zoning," Brewer said in a statement following the decision. "I thank the Department of Buildings for its ruling that the so-called open space at this site does not meet the Zoning Resolution's standards for open space."
SJP Properties did not respond to a request for comment.

Very good and active discussion going on in the link. I love Gothamist.
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  #65  
Old Posted Jul 13, 2017, 1:12 AM
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Quote:
"We need to stop rewarding developers who play games with lot shapes and sizes to achieve results that plainly shouldn’t be possible under the zoning," Brewer said in a statement following the decision. "I thank the Department of Buildings for its ruling that the so-called open space at this site does not meet the Zoning Resolution's standards for open space."
Like any grey area type of scheme or loop hole, the developers are legally taking advantage of it. If they want this to stop, than amend the rules, but this is finger pointing which will ultimately get resolved. Shame with the delay, because this design arguably is one of the best for the UWS pipeline wise. Any sort of downsizing would ruin the proportions and aesthetically, would be compressed with the current design. I'd hate for this to go through a redesign. Always the risk that it'll turn into garbage.
     
     
  #66  
Old Posted Jul 14, 2017, 2:58 AM
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They're idiots. It's a "loophole" that they're using to try and stop the development. As you say, the law is the law. If it's legal, it's legal. How many rezonings do they want to go though? There has to be balance, the city (and its neighborhoods) has to be allowed to grow. In New York, the only way to do that is up. If they don't like it, they can always move. I'm sick of these people who live in Manhattan complaining about buildings.
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  #67  
Old Posted Jul 14, 2017, 12:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NYguy View Post
They're idiots. It's a "loophole" that they're using to try and stop the development. As you say, the law is the law. If it's legal, it's legal. How many rezonings do they want to go though? There has to be balance, the city (and its neighborhoods) has to be allowed to grow. In New York, the only way to do that is up. If they don't like it, they can always move. I'm sick of these people who live in Manhattan complaining about buildings.
What makes it worse, is one of the leaders of the group who is spearheading this, lives in a rent stabilized unit, and has for decades. So the massive increase in rent in that area has literally zero effect on her.
It really never ceases to amaze me that maybe a couple dozen people can prevent, or delay new housing from being built in a city so housing starved.
     
     
  #68  
Old Posted Jul 14, 2017, 3:19 PM
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  #69  
Old Posted Jul 15, 2017, 5:28 AM
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^^^^^

Time to get my medical card for my glaucoma that developed just now.
     
     
  #70  
Old Posted Jul 15, 2017, 5:34 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NYguy View Post
They're idiots. It's a "loophole" that they're using to try and stop the development. As you say, the law is the law. If it's legal, it's legal. How many rezonings do they want to go though? There has to be balance, the city (and its neighborhoods) has to be allowed to grow. In New York, the only way to do that is up. If they don't like it, they can always move. I'm sick of these people who live in Manhattan complaining about buildings.
Which is why ultimately I see this project continuing. There is no solid basis for the claims that they are making. It's really just a temporary setback to satisfy the emotions of their constituents. They clearly don't want it, and this is borderline fabrication of rules that don't exist.
     
     
  #71  
Old Posted Aug 28, 2017, 7:44 AM
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It's not that much taller then it's surroundings and this is NYC afterall. Hope it gets built.
     
     
  #72  
Old Posted Sep 27, 2017, 2:39 PM
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Upper West Side's tallest tower back on track
Department of Buildings clears 668-foot project after work temporarily stopped over community objections



Quote:
The city gave the green light Tuesday to developers of a 668-foot apartment tower that is set to be the tallest on the Upper West Side. The project, being built by a partnership between SJP Properties and Mitsui Fudosan America, had faced challenges from neighborhood groups over its scale.

Opponents had argued that the project violated the building code and filed an objection with the Department of Buildings, which agreed to look into one of the gripes regarding required open space. As a result, the department shut down the site in July until the developers could provide information to resolve the issue. As Crain's reported this spring, the tower's scale is only possible thanks to a complex combination of air rights from around the block.

On Tuesday, the department said it had received information addressing its concerns, though the submission did not involve structural changes to the building itself. With the audit wrapped up, the developers will need to refile for new permits, which they are likely to do as quickly as possible, especially since two elected officials have since joined in opposition to the plan.

City Council members have recently shown an increased willingness to go after projects that are outside their traditional purview, including as-of-right developments and projects that require minor approvals from the Department of City Planning.

"I continue to believe that this project is out of scale, out of context, and runs counter to existing zoning regulations," said City Councilwoman Helen Rosenthal. "I will continue to work with community groups to push that case, and will explore all available options to do so."
======================
http://www.crainsnewyork.com/article..._medium=social
     
     
  #73  
Old Posted Sep 27, 2017, 3:45 PM
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As usual, the "community" (really a few rich NIMBYs) tries lawsuits to block projects, even though they have no legal argument.

Obviously this lawsuit failed, but I think the larger goal is for the NIMBYs to send a "warning" to anyone wanting to build - we'll come after you, regardless of merits.

Anyways, this tower will be a great addition to the UWS. Can't wait to see this added to the skyline.
     
     
  #74  
Old Posted Sep 27, 2017, 4:31 PM
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Well here's our "warning" to the NIMBY hordes:

Bring it on, sunshine. Coz sooner or later, you'll all be yesterday's news...and a sleazy tabloid at that.
     
     
  #75  
Old Posted Sep 29, 2017, 8:01 PM
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The City should have allowed an additional 10 floors for the NIMBYs having wasted everyone's time. That way, in the future these groups would think long and hard before bothering everyone with nonsense.
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  #76  
Old Posted Sep 29, 2017, 9:15 PM
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^ Wasted everyone's time and added costs as well, which will then get passed onto the buyers, making housing more expensive in an already extremely expensive city.

I wonder if morons like Gale Brewer ever thought about that?
     
     
  #77  
Old Posted Sep 29, 2017, 10:11 PM
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That doesn't look too out of place. Besides, (), tall buildings go in New York. It's not as though this is some neighborhood where some high rise is breaking the proverbial glass ceiling where none yet exist. It's a neighborhood that already has dozens of high rises and not too far from even more that are even taller. What kind of New Yorker hasn't become used to high rises yet?

If I were them I'd be working with the developers on the design to make sure it jives with the neighborhood's style more than trying to keep it from happening.
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  #78  
Old Posted Sep 30, 2017, 2:42 AM
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Originally Posted by antinimby View Post
^ Wasted everyone's time and added costs as well, which will then get passed onto the buyers, making housing more expensive in an already extremely expensive city.

I wonder if morons like Gale Brewer ever thought about that?
That was the whole point.

No one thought that the NIMBYs would stop the building. They're trying to add costs, waste time, and send a message to developers: build in our neighborhood and we will litigate and harrass.

So, yeah, the building is now being built, but the NIMBYs accomplished their goal.
     
     
  #79  
Old Posted Sep 30, 2017, 2:40 PM
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That being their plan of attack, then, the City should allow developers to countersue. It's their land to build on.
It's nowhere near a Robert Moses-like situation wherein property owners just get kicked to the curb without recompense.
     
     
  #80  
Old Posted Sep 30, 2017, 2:47 PM
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The very idea that the community is able to delay and impede a development such as this for the length of time that it did is what is systematically wrong with the current soft cost process via the city and the legislative maze. Just another element in why developments are so expensive. The process needs to be sped up. Its ridiculous that wealthy snobs can do this, simply behind the facade of having money, which = power. The city needs to enact laws to prevent this.
     
     
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