Opposition to NYU mega-dorm
NYU East 12th Street Dorm Under Construction
In late 2005, NYU announced plans to build a 26-story mega-dorm on the site of the demolished St. Ann’s Church, on East 12th Street between 3rd and 4th Avenues. While GVSHP and neighbors expressed extreme concern about the plan, NYU publicly pledged to handle this building project “differently” than those in the past, and to take the concerns expressed by the community about this project and try to integrate them into the final design plan. After providing NYU with such feedback — particularly concerns about the size and height of the project — GVSHP and neighbors waited to hear back from NYU about the status of the plan, and what decisions had been made. Over the months, inquiries to NYU about the status of the project received no response.
Then in late July, GVSHP and neighbors found out that, without informing them, NYU had filed building plans for the project and was beginning construction. After getting copies of the building plans from the Department of Buildings, GVSHP and neighbors were shocked to discover that NYU had not made a single change to the design plan, and that if anything the building would be taller than NYU had originally led the public to believe.
On August 2nd, GVSHP was joined by State Senator Tom Duane, Council Member Rosie Mendez, and more than 60 neighbors in the sweltering heat to protest NYU’s reneging on its promise and moving ahead with this totally inappropriate mega-dorm plan. The protest generated positive media coverage on NY1 News, in the Villager, the Village Voice, on Channel FOX-5 News, WBAI, and WFUV.
GVSHP also wrote to NYU President John Sexton urging him to scrap the current plans for the dorm and come back to the table with neighborhood residents to discuss a more appropriate and acceptable design. Sexton and NYU have thus far refused to respond.
In the absence of any real dialogue with NYU and any willingness on their part to make substantive changes, GVSHP is working with neighbors who are looking at all options available, including legal ones. GVSHP is also stepping up its efforts to press the City to force NYU to find locations OUTSIDE of the already-oversaturated Village should they expand in the future. GVSHP is also pressing the City to include the 3rd and 4th Avenue corridors, where the East 12th Street site is located, in a tentatively planned rezoning of the East Village, so that outrageously out-of-scale developments such as this one would no longer be allowed in this area. The City has thus far not supported either initiative.
HOW TO HELP:
- WRITE TO THE CITY NOW letting them know how opposed you are to NYU’s mega-dorm plan, urging them to find locations OUTSIDE of our neighborhood should NYU continue to expand in the future, and urging that the 3rd and 4th Avenue corridors, which NYU has targeted for their expansion, be rezoned so as not to permit further overdevelopment. CLICK HERE for a sample letter you can use.