Judge Denies Final Appeal by Opponents of the Two Bridges Development

Posted on: May 28th, 2021 at 5:00 am by

The future coastline, Photo: SHoP Architects

The years-running community effort to derail development of the Two Bridges waterfront ended in crushing defeat yesterday.

The New York Court of Appeals declined to hear cases from community groups that had previously sued to stop the four mega-towers from the coastline. This rejection arrives three months after the developers successfully overturned the case on appeal. According to the Real Deal, the fact that any final appeal was heard indicates the groups had to obtain approval from the state Supreme Court (a rarity).

You’ll recall that Lower East Side Organized Neighbors (LESON) filed their lawsuit in March 2019 to reverse the City’s approval of four new towers along the coast. A year later, State Supreme Court Judge Arthur Engoron, who presided over the case, ruled in favor of the community, and found that the slate of skyscrapers stood in direct contradiction to the underlying Two Bridges Large Scale Residential Development zoning.

Here is what’s in store…

JDS and Two Bridges Neighborhood Council propose a 1,008-foot rental building that cantilevers over a senior center, designed by SHoP Architects (247 Cherry Street); L+M and CIM propose a 798 and 728-foot tower beast in the parking lot behind Lands End II, designed by Handel Architects (260 South Street); and Starrett plans a 724-foot tower, designed by Perkins Eastman (259 Clinton Street).

“We appreciate the court’s review and look forward to delivering on those benefits,״ a spokesperson for the developers said in a statement.

The grassroots groups that leveled these lawsuits vowed to fight the outcome.

“Although we are incredibly disappointed by the Court’s rejection of our request that they review the appellate division decision, we will continue to pursue all options to stop these towers,” TUFF-LES, CAAAV and GOLES said in a collective statement.

“Four years later, there’s not a single shovel in the ground,” LESON noted in its statement. “It’s important for residents and supporters of our No Towers, No Compromise campaign to know that this is still not a done deal, and our fight against displacement is far from over.”

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