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Home : Preservation : Mulry Square MTA Ventilation Plant : Latest News : 12/09/16

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Governor Gives MTA Carte Blanche To Overdevelop

Top shows limits of what zoning allows on an MTA-owned site in Manhattan; bottom shows what could now be built on the same site with new allowances granted to MTA (images courtesy of Municipal Art Society)

Last week Governor Cuomo vetoed a bill supported by GVSHP, many fellow preservation and planning groups, and local governments throughout New York State which rescinded a recently enacted provision in the State budget allowing the MTA to override local zoning restrictions to develop property it owns for virtually any purpose.  While the MTA has long been able to ignore local zoning on its property when using it for a “transportation purpose” (i.e. mass transit), the recently enacted provision upheld by the Governor gives the MTA the ability to ignore local zoning even for a non-transportation purpose – such as leasing a property to a private developer simply to generate revenue for the cash-strapped agency.

This is a deeply disturbing prospect, given that the MTA owns literally hundreds of properties throughout the five boroughs, including several in our neighborhoods.
  And the MTA has certainly been involved in selling or leasing its properties for commercial developments in the past, but those have had to abide by local zoning regulations.  With the carte blanche now afforded the agency by the Governor, there is no limit on the size, height, and type of development which can take place on MTA property.  Read more here.

GVSHP is working with state legislators and fellow preservation and planning groups to coordinate next steps in response to this troubling move by the Governor and the MTA which threatens the fabric of our neighborhoods.

Home : Preservation : Mulry Square MTA Ventilation Plant : Latest News : 12/09/16

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