Sunday, June 16, 2024

NYC: As City Reopens, Council Delays Vote on DeBlasio’s Disastrous Soho, NoHo Re-zoning Plan


Good News? I hope so. I’m reprinting here Andrew Berman’s report from the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation. This about Mayor DeBlasio’s disastrous proposal to unleash real estate developers on Soho and NoHo. He must be stopped. He’s already done so much to wreck the city. And he doesn’t care about Manhattan at all. For example, a tent city of homeless is now set up at Sixth Avenue and 8th St in front of what was Liquiteria (formerly Grays Papaya). On Sixth Avenue between 8th St and Waverly Place on both sides of the avenue stores are for rent like it’s the Great Depression. We have no supermarket in the neighborhood. Businesses can’t survive because of the greedy landlords. This has all happened under DeBlasio, and it’s citywide. (PS Andrew Yang will not solve these problems. Forget about that.)

Berman writes:

“This afternoon, without explanation or comment, the City postponed its vote to certify the Mayor’s proposed SoHo/NoHo (and Chinatown) rezoning, with no new date given. The City had failed to provide required materials about the plan. The plan has to be certified to proceed, and there are only a limited number of scheduled meetings during which this can be done with enough time for it to be voted upon before the end of the year, when the Mayor and much of the current City Council leave office. We will let you know if and when a new date has been scheduled for a certification vote.

“In other positive news, this morning two of the city’s oldest, largest, and most respected tenant and housing advocacy groups came out strongly against the Mayor’s rezoning plan with an op-ed in the Daily Newsread it here. The piece cites and references our study showing how the Mayor’s plan would destroy affordable housing and make housing in these neighborhoods more expensive and the population less socio-economically and racially diverse, and supports our Community Alternative Plan. The piece directly calls upon Council members Chin and Rivera and Borough President Brewer to oppose the plan.

“In recent weeks, opposition to the Mayor’s plan has grown, including from Chinatown/social justice groups, former members of the city’s Landmarks Preservation Commission, the venerable Municipal Art Society (which lobbied for the city’s first zoning laws), and the National Trust for Historic Preservation and the Preservation League of New York State.

“Finally, residents of SoHo and NoHo including our friends at the SoHo Alliance and Broadway Residents Committee have filed a lawsuit against the plan — read more here.

“We can’t take anything for granted, and have to keep our momentum going. The coming weeks will be critical in determining if this hyper-development plan, which would destroy these neighborhoods and push out long-time businesses and residents, will be approved and serve as a model for further rezonings throughout our city.”

Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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