Plans for Delancey Underground “Low Line” Presented to CB3

Posted on: September 22nd, 2011 at 7:48 am by

As reported earlier this week, the Lower East Side is now considering its own subterranean version of Chelseas’s High Line called the Delancey Underground. James Ramsey and Dan Barasch, the two entrepreneurs behind this innovative “Low Line” project, presented their bold plan to Community Board 3 during last night’s Land Use committee meeting. Representatives of local politicians including Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver were also in attendance for the presentation.

Ramsey and Barasch together envision an underground community greenspace nearly the size of Gramercy Park at the foot of the Williamsburg Bridge, where the former Williamsburg Bridge Trolley Terminal sits abandoned. The team argues that the Lower East Side is one of the least green areas in the city that is in need of some spruce-up. “We are getting involved in this because we want to turn this into a community space,” said Mr. Barasch, a vice president at Poptech. The project envisions using advanced solar technology to channel sunlight underground through fiber optic cables, enabling plants and trees to flourish.

According to current plans for the Delancey Underground, the ambitious project would be adjacent to the SPURA development site on Delancey Street. However, it is important to note that no subsidies from SPURA would be used to fund the project. Much like the High Line, the money would need to be raised privately.

On the topic of the SPURA development project, a lawyer representing tenants of 400 Grand Street was on hand. The quaint pre-war tenement building, currently the new home of the Jewish Conservancy Visitor Center, sits on parcel #5 of SPURA and is in the line of fire. That building would need to be demolished and the eight tenants remaining in the building would be displaced. A representative from the NYC Housing Preservation and Development let tenants know the city would assist them anyway possible if they were displaced from their homes.

Reporting by Andrew Cohen

Recent Stories

STIK’s 7-Story ‘Migrant Mural’ on Allen Street Raised $12,500 for the Tenement Museum

Street artist STIK’s latest mural has been on view for a month at the southeast corner of Delancey and Allen Streets. The 7-story piece was painted in conjunction with the Fat Free Art gallery and the Tenement Museum. Proceeds from the exhibition in the Allen Street showroom – totaling $12,500 – go toward the museum’s […]

Councilwoman Margaret Chin Threatens Legal Action Over Two Bridges Supertall Towers

Last Friday, local politicans and community leaders held a rally outside the senior center at 80 Rutgers Street to protest the so-called “wall of glass” coming to the Two Bridges waterfront. The media stunt was an effort to push the City Planning Commission to think twice before approving the applications for these monstrous buildings when […]

Seward Park Co-op Board Prevails Against Disgruntled Residents in Parking Garage Privatizing Lawsuit

The civil war that polarized the Seward Park Co-ops for the last year finally concluded last week. The Seward Park Board of Directors essentially privatized the garage as a for-profit parking operation when it entered a ten-year lease with Icon/Quik Park in early 2016. It was a 6 to 5 vote at the time. According […]

‘L’Amico’ Backers Propose New Venue for Mysterious Jarmulowsky Bank Hotel

Guess those alleged plans for “creative” commercial offices at the Jarmulowsky Bank Building – first disclosed last summer – are no longer in the cards. The Community Board 3 agenda for next month’s SLA applicants is revealing enough. It lists 9 Orchard Street (aka 54 Canal) on the docket for hotel license consideration. But that’s […]

Danny the Steward of Orchard Street Faces Eviction, Pleads for Help

While Nathan might be the mayor of upper Orchard Street, south of the Delancey divide, that title belongs to a bearded man named Danny Coffey. You’ve definitely crossed paths with him, forever patrolling the block between Grand and Broome Streets, often whistling loudly to himself. Danny is now in a tough spot and seeks community […]