Judge Halts Two Bridges Megatowers After Hearing 3 Lawsuits
A state Supreme Court judge yesterday extended a temporary halt on a slate of controversial Two Bridges waterfront towers, following a day of testimony on three separate lawsuits accusing the city of illegally approving the $4.5 billion developments.
Judge Arthur Engoron, who presided over the cases, issued an injunction against the developers behind three super-tall projects between Rutgers Slip and Clinton Street.
Below is a media advisory recap from Vanessa Thill, a member of the Lower East Side Organized Neighbors community coalition that leveled its own lawsuit earlier this year.
[Yesterday] shows the strength of community in the face of wealthy developers and a corrupt Mayor. Years of community outreach, education, and organizing, and months of research and coalition building went into preparation for this momentous day. The Lower East Side Organized Neighbors succeeded in securing an injunction against the Two Bridges megatowers, and presenting a robust and compelling argument in court.
Judge Engoron, who presided over the hearing, surmised that the Mayor and the City Planning Commission cannot act independently or outside of the law. He acknowledged that there is a history of how developments like these can alter neighborhoods. He issued an injunction against the developers until August 2. While he will wait until that date to make a decision, he suggested that it is likely the developers and City Planning did not follow the proper process, and their plans might have to be altered accordingly. He said that findings are necessary, the ULURP review process may be necessary, and Authorization based on the LSRD (Large Scale Residential District) might be necessary, meaning the towers cannot block light/air or alter the neighborhood character.
Dozens of residents and neighbors rallied against the towers and the Mayor that approved them. [Yesterday] shows that their voices were heard.