Supplemental environmental review of Atlantic Yards ordered

Court found ESDC’s environmental analysis insufficient due to change in Atlantic Yards project, but refused to halt project. In 2006, the Empire State Development Corporation approved the general project plan for Forest City Ratner Companies’ Atlantic Yards project in Brooklyn. The $4 billion project includes a sports arena and sixteen high-rise buildings. Ratner agreed to purchase air rights from the Metropolitan Transportation Authority at the beginning of the project in order to facilitate the … <Read More>

Columbia’s plan OK’d: High Court reversed App. Div.

Court of Appeals reversed First Department’s strongly worded opinion. In 2001, Columbia University contacted the City’s Economic Development Corporation in an effort to redevelop West Harlem as part of a campus expansion. Not long after, EDC issued a West Harlem Master Plan that stated that West Harlem could be redeveloped through rezoning. EDC, after it issued the master plan, hired a private firm to examine the neighborhood conditions of West Harlem. The study concluded that … <Read More>

Court upsets Columbia’s eminent domain option

Property owners challenge ESDC’s authority to use eminent domain on behalf of Columbia. Looking to expand in West Harlem, Columbia University teamed up with the City’s Economic Development Corporation in 2001 to redevelop the area. Not long after, EDC issued a West Harlem Master Plan. The plan stated that West Harlem could be redeveloped through rezoning, and did not mention any blighted conditions in Manhattanville. Columbia began purchasing property in the area in 2002 for … <Read More>

ESDC loses FOIL case on Columbia project’s files

Community groups gain access to withheld documents since Columbia University and ESDC hired same consultant. Columbia University hired AKRF, a prominent planning firm, to help gain agency approvals for its controversial expansion into Manhattanville. Two months later, the Empire State Development Corporation hired AKRF to conduct a blight study needed to determine if the use of eminent domain as part of Columbia’s plan was appropriate. Columbia paid AKRF’s consulting fees for preparing the blight study … <Read More>

Challenge to Javits Center expansion rebuffed

Court finds environmental review for the Hudson Yards sufficient to cover changes to Javits plan. The plan to expand the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center underwent changes since the approval of the final environmental impact statement for the Hudson Yards rezoning plan in 2004. When in July 2006 the Empire State Development Corporation approved the changes without a supplemental EIS, four Hell’s Kitchen residents, the Municipal Art Society and the Hell’s Kitchen Neighborhood Association challenged … <Read More>

Plan for Brooklyn Bridge Park Withstands Challenge

Citizens group challenged inclusion of private residential development. In 2002, Mayor Bloomberg and Governor Pataki created the Brooklyn Bridge Park Development Corporation as a subsidiary of the Empire State Development Corporation and charged it with the responsibility to design and build a proposed park on Port Authority land along Brooklyn’s East River waterfront. The 2002 agreement required that no less than 80 percent of the acreage be park space, all revenue generated from commercial uses … <Read More>