CityLaw Profile: Elizabeth Fine, General Counsel, Empire State Development Corporation

Elizabeth Fine became General Counsel and Executive Vice-President of the Empire State Development Corporation in 2014 after a long career of government service. Fine grew up in New Haven, Washington D.C., and Lima, Peru. Her family eventually settled in the Boston area, where Fine graduated Brookline High School. Jonathan Fine, Elizabeth’s father, had worked in Lima for the Agency for International Development while her mother, Edith W. Fine, was an administrator for the Peace Corp. … <Read More>

Court affirms dismissal of Atlantic Yards challenge

ESDC’s determination upheld that three blocks outside urban renewal area were blighted. In 2003, Forest City Ratner proposed to redevelop a 22-acre site in Prospect Heights, Brooklyn. The site included portions of the Atlantic Terminal Urban Renewal Area and portions of three privately-owned blocks outside the renewal area. After Ratner’s proposal was accepted, the Empire State Development Corporation designated itself as lead agency for the project under state environmental law. ESDC prepared an environmental impact … <Read More>

Court affirms dismissal of Atlantic Yards challenge

Residents argued that the project’s public uses were illegitimate. The $4 billion Atlantic Yards project calls for an 18,000-seat arena for the Nets professional basketball team, a 180- room hotel, at least 16 high-rise apartment and office buildings, and eight acres of open space. The project site includes the Atlantic Terminal Urban Renewal Area, as well as surrounding areas developed by commercial and residential structures. The project calls for the Empire State Development Corporation to … <Read More>

Court dismisses challenge to Atlantic Yards

Residents failed to show ESDC acted without rational basis. Brooklyn residents sued the Empire State Development Corporation, the MTA and the State Public Authorities Control Board, arguing that the agencies wrongfully approved the $4 billion project to redevelop the Atlantic Terminal area. The project would replace residential and commercial structures with a mixed-use development that would include an 18,000-seat arena designed by Frank Gehry for the Nets professional basketball team, a 180-room hotel, 16 high-rise … <Read More>

City Announces Lawsuits Against Two Landlords and One Settlement for Building Code Violations, Dangerous Conditions

On January 6, 2023, Mayor Eric Adams and Corporation Counsel Sylvia O. Hinds-Radix announced the filing of two lawsuits against Alma Realty Corp. and Empire Management America Corp. for the failure to fix thousands of code violations which created dangerous living conditions for tenants. Additionally, the city announced a settlement with Sentinel Real Estate Corporation to establish a timeline for repairs.

Blocked Brooklyn Bridge View Claim Defeated

Development corporation constructed buildings in Brooklyn Bridge Park that blocked view of the Brooklyn Bridge from the Brooklyn Promenade. In 2005 Brooklyn Bridge Park Development Corporation and Empire State Development Corporation adopted a general project plan for Brooklyn Bridge Park that included the development of a hotel, restaurant, and residential units upland of Brooklyn’s Pier 1. Community members demanded during the initial environmental review that the new buildings not block the view of the Brooklyn … <Read More>