Huge Turnout Against East 14th Zoning Variance
On Tuesday GVSHP was joined by dozens of neighbors, the East Village Community Coalition, members of SEIU Local 32BJ union, and a representative of City Councilmember Rosie Mendez to oppose a zoning variance application for 432 East 14th Street (1st Avenue/Avenue A). The developer is seeking permission to building more than 50% taller (124 feet high vs. 80 feet on 14th Street) and more than 25% larger than zoning rules allow (application here). GVSHP is strongly opposed because the development would be woefully out-of-scale for the East Village, and because the developer has failed to meet the legal findings required to get such a zoning variance (read our testimony here).
We’re pleased to report that the Board of Standards and Appeals (BSA) agreed with many of our contentions about the faulty logic behind the variance application, based upon supposed “hardship” from soil conditions on the site which are common throughout the area. The BSA also pushed back upon the developer’s justification of the proposed scale of the new building by pointing to the towers of Stuyvesant Town across 14th Street, which are set back behind parks and driveways, unlike the narrow streets of the East Village. The Commissioners also cited the receipt of more than 300 letters generated by GVSHP members expressing opposition to the variance as part of their deliberations.
You can read more about the case and the hearing in the New York Post, EV Grieve, Real Estate Weekly, and The Real Deal, and view photos of the hearing here.
The next hearing is tentatively scheduled for March 28th. We will need to maintain a strong presence at the BSA hearings and continue to flood the agency with letters in opposition to keep our momentum going and prevent this bogus zoning variance from being approved here.
HOW TO HELP:
- Send a new letter to the BSA (or your first if you haven’t written them before) urging them to reject the zoning variance application for 432 East 14th Street in light of the developer’s failure to make a convincing case at Tuesday’s hearing >>