ULURP Watch: BBP Approves with Modifications GPL and 77 Commercial

by GWAPP on

Brooklyn Borough President, Marty Markowitz, made his recommendation on Greenpoint Landing and 77 Commercial St’s ULURP requests. He has Approved with Modifications both projects. Below you can view the original documents as well as some noted highlights.

Click for full BBP Greenpoint Landing Report, 20 pages. [PDF – 546 KB]

Greenpoint Landing

PUBLIC HEARING
The Borough President held his public hearing on these applications on September 17, 2013. Staff of the Borough President expressed concern on his behalf dealing with the lack of available affordable senior housing throughout the borough. Borough President staff also shared his concerns with regards to reaching varying levels of affordability, and that such units be permanently affordable. Given infrastructure constraints, the Borough President’s staff was seeking more information regarding what other possible mitigations might be implemented for the benefit of the community. Twelve speakers provided testimony with the majority testifying against the proposed project.

RECOMMMENDATIONS
Be it resolved that the Borough President of Brooklyn, pursuant to section 197-c of the New York City Charter, recommends that the City Planning Commission and City Council approve the disposition of city-owned property and text amendment proposal subject to the following conditions:

  1. That the Land Disposition Agreement between the City and Greenpoint Landing Associates (GLA) require GLA and its successors to commit to:
    1. the filing of the Inclusionary Housing Plan, and approval by the Commissioner of the Department of Housing Preservation and Development for every as-of-right building associated with Greenpoint Landing, as a condition of utilizing the air rights and floor area bonuses connected to the school site and park site;
    2. Developing the Point of Agreement units per the following:
      • That such units be permanently affordable;
      • Approximately 100 units of the affordable housing being specifically earmarked for senior citizens/the disabled, not exceeding 30 percent AMI by utilizing senior housing funding from HUD Section 202/Section 8 programs or other comparable sources of financing;
      • Using the same floor area envision for the 431 Points of Agreement (POA) units, increasing the number of units based on the smaller size of the elderly units; and,
      • And but for the first 98 POA units, that subsequent phases of the remaining POA and Inclusionary Housing affordable units, including tiers of incomes including those less than 60 percent AMI with rent not exceeding 120 percent of AMI and that eligibility not exceed 130 percent of AMI and to accommodate larger households by providing at least five percent as three-bedroom apartments.
    3. Memorializing the fifty percent preference for community residence in the lottery, including displaced former residents;
    4. That $2.5 million from the proceeds of the sale of lot 32 be placed in a Trust and Agency Fund to cover the capital costs of the Newtown Barge Playground expansion and not remain in the City’s General Fund;
    5. That should Newtown Barge Playground expansion development cost escalate in order to maintain a level of park improvement worthy of the residents of Greenpoint, the developer’s share of increase would be at a rate of 35 percent of the overall increase;
    6. That WAP plans be advanced for review by the Department of City Planning for the remaining GPL properties;
    7. Designating a community liaison officer just prior to commencing site work and maintaining such officer until the final Certificate of Occupancy is issued and such officer share not less than weekly updates during this period;
    8. That in order to assure space is available for the Administration for Children’s Service to secure for daycare slots, according to the terms of a Restrictive Declaration to be recorded against the property of GLA, where GLA would provide funding for publiclyfunded day care, GLA be required to first offer retail space to ACS prior to marketing 14 the space for retail use and that ACS would have 90 days to respond with intent to lease such space;
    9. Establishing and maintaining free shuttle bus service to the Vernon Avenue IRT 7-train station as a condition of obtaining a Temporary or Permanent Certificate of Occupancy that meets or exceeds 500 cumulative units and that additional shuttles be added to the service based on TCOs or COs that meet or exceed each additional 1,000 units and that occupants of affordable households be charged not more than fifty percent of any fee to use this service;
    10. The discounting for residents of affordable units, the costs of amenities such as the IRT 7 train shuttle service (free), on-site parking and other in building amenities;

Be it Further Resolved that the Department of Education commits to the following:

  1. Expanding access to quality schools by opening a new 640 seat district school at the proposed DuPont Street site;
  2. Re-evaluating just prior to commencing design, as a means to best address needs, the proportion of elementary versus intermediate school students, in consultation with District 14 Community Education Council, to determine possible school structure (i.e. Pre-K to 5 or Pre-K to 8); and;
  3. Periodically re-assessing the needs of the community for additional high quality district school capacity to meet the public school needs for housing elementary and intermediate school students, in consultation with District 14 Community Education Council, to determine when to designate an additional site and then to secure funding for site acquisition and construction.

That the Metropolitan Transit Authority should:

  1. Identify strategies for improving G train service, to achieve operational frequency consistent with the actual schedule of service and implement such strategies promptly;
  2. Undertake semi-annual full-line impact reviews to determine the projected need for increased frequency and/or lengthening each train;
  3. Add additional cars to the G train to expand each train’s capacity to eight to ten cars from its current four cars per train;
  4. Monitor B32 service in six month increments and increase service accordingly;
  5. Upon the issuance of TCOs or COs of at least 1,000 units at GPL, study the B32 route adjustments to relocate service along Freeman and Green streets to DuPont and Eagle streets between Franklin Street and Manhattan Avenue, and increase frequency as warranted;
  6. Upon the issuance of TCOs or COs of at least 1,000 units at GPL, study the B24 and B43 for route adjustments to extend B24 service along Franklin Street to Commercial Street or B43 service along Commercial Street to West Street as a new terminus and increase frequency as warranted.

That the Department of Transportation, by not later than the completion of the anticipated public school opening at DuPont and Franklin Streets, should:

  1. Install high-visibility crosswalks and school crossing signs at intersections at both West and Franklin Streets with DuPont and Eagle Streets;
  2. Construct pedestrian traffic-calming bulb-outs at the intersections at both West and Franklin streets with DuPont, Eagle, Freeman and Green Streets.

Click for full BBP 77 Commercial Street Report, 16 pages. [PDF – 456 KB]

77 Commercial St

PUBLIC HEARING
The Borough President held his public hearing on these applications on September 17, 2013. Staff of the Borough President expressed concern on his behalf dealing with the lack of available affordable senior housing throughout the borough. Given the conditions outlined by CB 1 (detailed in CONSIDERATION section) and the concerns of the Borough President, the applicant’s representative explained a willingness to work to find an appropriate program to make senior housing work in this project. Borough President staff also shared his concerns with regards to the funds earmarked for park improvement and the accessibility of the affordable units to the building and offered amenities. A representative from the Mayor’s office explained that a contractual obligation with the developer ties this money to a set of performance obligations by the City to build the park. Further, a relocation site for the majority of MTA functions on site has been found and the City is working on a schedule with the MTA to remove its existing facilities.

The applicant’s representative addressed the Borough President’s other concern detailing that the affordable housing units will share an entrance with the market rate units in the tower closest to the water. The representative further clarified that all amenities on site will be open to all residents, with the fee built into the monthly rental.

Sixteen speakers provided testimony with the majority testifying against the proposed project.

RECOMMENDATIONS
Be it resolved that the Borough President of Brooklyn, pursuant to section 197-c of the New York City Charter, recommends that the City Planning Commission and City Council approve the zoning map and text amendment proposal subject to the following conditions:

  1. That the Land Disposition Agreement between the City and Waterview at Greenpoint LLC require it and its successors to commit to:
    1. The filing of the Inclusionary Housing Plan, and approval by the Commissioner of the Department of Housing Preservation and Development, as a condition of utilizing the air rights and floor area bonus connected to the 65 Commercial Street park site;
    2. The affordable units (pursuant to the Points of Agreement) be as follows:
      • Permanently affordable;
      • Specifically earmarked that approximately 70 units be for senior citizens/the disabled, not exceeding 30 percent AMI by utilizing senior housing funding from HUD Section 202/Section 8 programs or other comparable sources of financing;
      • Using the same floor area envision for the 200 POA units, through an increase of the number of units based on the smaller size of the elderly units;
      • Continuing to include affordable housing at 80 percent AMI but that rent not exceed 120 percent of AMI and that eligibility not exceed 130 percent of AMI, which may be achieved through the introduction of government programs and to accommodate larger households by providing at least five percent as their bedroom units.
    3. Memorializing the 50 percent preference for community residence in the lottery, including displaced former residents;
    4. The sale of 65 Commercial Street proceeds be placed in a Trust and Agency Fund to cover the capital costs of the Box Street Park expansion and not remain in the City’s General Fund;
    5. Designating a community liaison officer just prior to commencing site work and maintaining such officer until the final Certificate of Occupancy is issued and such officer share not less than weekly updates during this period;
    6. The discounting for residents of affordable units, the costs of amenities such as on-site parking and other building amenities.

Be it Further Resolved that:
The Department of Education commits to opening the new 640-seat district school at the proposed DuPont Street site in a timely manner; and, That the Metropolitan Transit Authority should:

  1. Expedite improvements to the G train line to maximize on-time service and minimize delays;
  2. Undertake semi-annual full-line impact reviews to determine the projected need for increased frequency and/or lengthening each train;
  3. Add additional cars to the G train to expand each train’s capacity to 8- 10 cars from its current four cars per train; and,
  4. Monitor B32 and B43 service in six months increments and increase service accordingly as well as modify the route of the B32 to DuPont and Eagle streets when usage warrants such a change.

Round Up of ULURP Watch:

1. CB1 recommends Disapproval with Modifications
2. BBP recommend Approval with Modifications
3. Waiting on CPC decision.

GWAPP

GWAPP

The Greenpoint Waterfront Association for Parks & Planning, Inc. ("GWAPP") is a not-for-profit group, 501(c)(3), comprised of individuals, community organizations, religious institutions, and concerned citizens from the Greenpoint-Williamsburg communities dedicated to the development of parks and public access on the Greenpoint waterfront.

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