Appellate Court to Hear Community Lawsuit that Halted Development of Two Bridges Towers

Posted on: January 19th, 2021 at 5:00 am by

The future coastline, Photo: SHoP Architects

Down on the Two Bridges waterfront, the future of three super-tall residential projects will soon be decided. Indeed, it took a year, but a community-led lawsuit is now on appeal, with a court date set for next week.

You’ll recall that a consortium of community groups under the banner of Lower East Side Organized Neighbors (LESON) filed a lawsuit in March 2019 to reverse the City’s approval of four new towers along the coast. A year later, State Supreme Court Judge Arthur Engoron, who presided over the case, ruled in favor of the community, and found that the slate of skyscrapers stood in direct contradiction to the underlying Two Bridges Large Scale Residential Development zoning.

The Appellate Court set a date to hear the case – January 27.

The news follows just a few months after the Appellate Court overturned the lawsuit brought forth by City Council that would have forced developers into the public land-use process.

In a protest action yesterday, the plaintiffs demanded City Council support the fight to stop the renewed effort toward towers.

Christopher Marte, candidate for City Council in District 1, said, “When this coalition stood up to the city, and stood up to developers, it made our neighbors stand up and fight,” Council candidate Christopher Marte said in a statement. “It made people from across our city from Inwood, to Flushing, to Sunset Park say, ‘this is our land, not your land.’ We are working class New Yorkers who built this city so it shouldn’t just serve the people who live in the Extell tower.”

If overturned, a wall of glass on the waterfront is a near certainty. JDS and Two Bridges Neighborhood Council propose a 1,008-foot rental building that cantilevers over a senior center, designed by SHoP Architects (247 Cherry Street); L+M and CIM propose a 798 and 728-foot tower beast in the parking lot behind Lands End II, designed by Handel Architects (260 South Street); and Starrett plans a 724-foot tower, designed by Perkins Eastman (259 Clinton Street).

259 Clinton St. rendering, Photo: Perkins Eastman

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