Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Important Public Meeting: This Thursday, CB6 To Review Lightstone Group's Application For 'Minor' Modifications At 363-365 Bond Street, Gowanus

Important Public Meeting: This Thursday, CB6 To Review Lightstone Group's Application For 'Minor' Modifications At 363-365 Bond Street, Gowanus

IMG_2256363-365 Bond Street IMG_2251IMG_8977IMG_8996IMG_9000Mark your calendar! There is an important public hearing coming up.
Brooklyn CB6 Landmarks/Land Use Committee will be reviewing The Lightstone Group's application for "minor modifications" to the previously approved land use actions at 363-365 Bond Street. The meeting will be held at 6:45pm on Thursday, September 27th and it will take place at P.S. 32 Auditorium, 317 Hoyt Street (between Union/President Streets), Brooklyn.

As many of you probably know by now, Lightstone is reviving the former Toll Brothers project on  Bond Street in Gowanus. Back in 2009, after a Uniform Land Use Review Process (ULURP) that was set in motion by Toll Brothers, the property was successfully spot re-zoned from manufacturing to special mixed-use by the City of New York despite the protests of many members of the community who pleaded with city officials to first clean the Gowanus Canal thoroughly before rezoning the area.

Shortly afterwards, however, the Environmental Protection Agency came to the community to inform residents of the toxicity of the Canal and declared is a Superfund Site. It did not take long for Toll Brothers to abandon its plans, stating that the Superfund designation made it impossible to go forward with their 447 unit luxury condo project.

The Lightstone Group doesn't seem to share the same concerns and is charging ahead. Though the project is basically the same as the one proposed by Toll Brothers, Lightstone has asked the New York City Planning Commission to modify the special permit granted to Toll Brothers back in 2009. City Planning considers these changes "minor" modification,s which are subject to review and approval only by the Commission, rather than 'major' modifications, which would require the initiation of a new ULURP.

The changes requested by Lightstone include "variations in the base height of the project, building heights and footprints of portions of the buildings, relocation of parking entrances, changes to the location and design of the open space, and changes to the number of residential units and size of non-residential portion of the proposed development."

Many Gowanus residents would not consider the change from 447 condo units originally planned by Toll to 700 rental units proposed by Lightstone quite so minor, especially on a site next to a Superfund which also happens to be in a flood zone. Besides, the project will increase the strains on the already overloaded, antiquated sewer infrastructure on Bond Street.

The community will have an opportunity to voice its concerns at Thursday's CB6 Land Use Committee on Thursday. Make sure you are there.
To read more on Lightstone's project , click here.

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