New York, NY – New York City Council Speaker Corey Johnson, Manhattan Borough President Gale A. Brewer, and Council Member Margaret S. Chin announced a joint lawsuit to force public review of three proposed development sites in Manhattan’s Two Bridges neighborhood. The Council and Borough President Brewer are suing the City, the Department of City Planning and its Director, the City Planning Commission and its Chair, and the Department of Buildings to stop construction on the site until the proposal goes through the public review process it legally requires.
“The Council is taking legal action to correct mistakes made by the City in trying to rush through a massive multi-site development without the public review process that projects of this size legally require,” said City Council Speaker Corey Johnson. “We expect projects which produce almost 3,000 units of new housing to go through the public review process mandated by the City Charter so we can assess the appropriateness of these developments, in terms of site planning, building scale, neighborhood context, and affordability as well as the environmental impacts to schools, open space, transportation, and countless other issues and make sure that an addition of thousands of units of housing – as many housing units as are being produced by neighborhood re-zonings – is thought through carefully.”
“City Planning’s staff and the Commission have exceeded their legal authority. They used a made-up process and made-up standards to approve these towers without the full land use review and Council approval that’s required,” said Manhattan Borough President Gale A. Brewer. “I don’t like suing the mayor or his agencies, but if that’s what it takes to get the residents of Two Bridges the full review and real negotiation they’re entitled to under the law, then I’m all in.”
“This lawsuit was made necessary by the actions of the Department of City Planning and this Administration,” said Council Member Margaret S. Chin. “My colleagues and I could not stand by as an entire neighborhood’s worth of rezoning was categorized as a ‘minor modification’. The residents of Two Bridges deserve a full public review process and I will not rest until they receive it. I thank Speaker Johnson for filing this lawsuit and for joining Borough President Brewer and me at the forefront of this fight.”