Appellate Court Upholds Council’s Special Permit Denial

City Planning Commission had approved the permit to operate a Bronx homeless shelter.  Liska NY, Inc. had constructed an eight-story homeless shelter at 731 Southern Boulevard in the Longwood area of the Bronx.  The shelter exceeded the height, setback, and floor area ratio limits for the site and on August 21, 2013 the City Planning Commission approved Liska’s request for a special permit to legalize the building.  On October 9, 2013 the City Council voted … <Read More>

Court upholds City’s approval of Columbia’s plan

Mini-storage owners unsuccessfully challenged FEIS. Columbia University proposed an expansion plan that would allow it to construct a new 17- acre campus in the Manhattanville neighborhood of West Harlem. The plan would create academic building space, university housing, as well as a contiguous below-grade facility, or “bathtub,” to support campus functions. After the City Planning Commission determined that Columbia’s plan might have a significant impact on the environment, Columbia prepared a final environmental impact statement … <Read More>

Council ordered to grant sidewalk cafe application

Council’s denial of permit based only on community opposition overturned. Jack Bistro, a restaurant at 80 University Place in Manhattan, applied for a sidewalk cafe permit to add outdoor seating. After a public hearing, DCA recommended approval. Community Board 2, which received the application from DCA for comment, recommended denial, citing the community’s “longstanding tradition” against outdoor seating along University Place.

When the application went to City Council, opponents reiterated that the community was against … <Read More>

Council overturned on refusal to remove use restriction

Brooklyn developer still cannot build housing. Middleland Inc. sought to rezone three lots on DeKalb Avenue and Spencer Street in Brooklyn and remove a 1975 restriction recorded on the site that limited its use to accessory parking for an adjacent IBM plant, closed since 1993 and now occupied by a Home Depot. Middleland planned to construct housing on its site.

Despite the Planning Commission’s approval, the City Council rejected both of Middleland’s requests, citing the … <Read More>

Court reverses order compelling Commission vote

Staten Island landowners claimed delay prejudiced their development application. The three Putter brothers owned a six-acre tract of land in the West Brighton/New Brighton section of Staten Island. Their property was located within the Special Hillsides Preservation District, which requires landowners to obtain Planning Department permission to develop their property. In 1999, the brothers submitted an application to the Planning Department to develop their site with 60 affordable townhouses.

Over the next several years the … <Read More>

City provides alternative sites for Bronx Gardeners

Settlement came after gardeners filed Article 78 petition. As reported in the November issue of CityLand, the City Council’s October 13, 2004 approval of the Courtlandt Avenue Apartments, a 167-unit, affordable housing development slated for Melrose Commons, would result in the demolition of several Bronx community gardens. The development site, comprising 16 lots, occupies most of the block between East 158th and East 159th Streets, and Park and Courtlandt Avenues.

On November 23, 2004, gardeners … <Read More>