Two Bridges ‘Final Stand’ Against Wall of Glass on the Waterfront
While Pickle Day seduced the mainstream on Orchard Street yesterday afternoon (i.e. tourists), the mood was much less happy-go-lucky down in Two Bridges. Full sour, indeed.
Dozens gathered in a show of solidarity for a so-called “final stand” against the addition of four more supertall towers along the Lower East Side waterfront.
Timing of the action was apt, as the City Planning Commission will host a final public hearing on Wednesday before voting on the Environmental Impact Statement drafted over the summer. Members of the public who attend will have a chance to speak (three minutes each).
Conceived by the Lower East Side Organized Neighbors (LESON), the rally and press conference was meant to highlight the “voices of parents, small business owners, seniors, and environmentalists who are united in demanding that the zoning resolution be enforced, so that these destructive towers will be denied the required permits.”
As reported, JDS Development (1,000 feet), Starrett Corp. (724 feet), and CIM/L+M (two 800-foot spires) are each planning as-of-right skyscrapers in the backyard of this low-income neighborhood. And lest we forget the 850-foot One Manhattan Square that opened the flood gates, so to speak.
LESON claims that the developments are illegal, and violate current zoning restrictions. They further charge that Mayor de Blasio and Councilwoman Chin are complicit in making this happen, despite the latter’s public push to impede those plans at City Council.
For their part, the triumvirate of developers aims to impart several neighborhood improvements. Included in the proposal – revamp the decaying East Broadway subway station and a new entrance at Rutgers and Madison Streets; ADA-accessibilty to the train station (which is a first); upgrades to Coleman, Captain Jacob Joseph, and Little Flower Playgrounds worth $15 million; various streetscape improvements; and flood resiliency measures.