Riverside South Center

The last section of undeveloped land from the old Hudson Rail Yards has been approved for development by the City Council. The Extell Development corporation has worked closely with Gale Brewer and Community Board 7, making several concessions and allowing the development to enrich the area in several ways. This Riverside South Center will be a series of linked developments.

Important Information:

  • School: 100,000 square feet of “core and shell” will be provided by the developer at no cost, and 85,000 square feet of the 100,000 square feet will be fully fitted-out by the School Construction Authority. The remaining 15,000 square feet will be stored for 5 years for future use in expansion. This new school is critical to alleviating current overcrowding and meeting future needs in grades K-8 on the upper West Side.
  • Affordable Housing: The project has been included in the city’s inclusionary housing program, requiring 20% (nearly 500,00 square feet) of the residential floor area to be affordable housing. The developer agreed to put 135,000 (180-220 units) square feet of new affordable housing units on-site and to establish a housing task force comprised of members of Community Boards 7 and 4, as well as the Council Member and Borough President, to review all affordable housing applications prior to their submission to the Department of Housing Preservation and Development
  • Parks: The development will designate $20 million to the Parks Department to mitigate the impact of Riverside Center residents on Riverside Park South. These funds will contribute to both the completion of the renovation of the West 59 Street Recreation Center and to Riverside Park South.
  • Retail: The developer agreed to increase both the number and square footage of retail stores along West End Avenue. In addition, Council Member Brewer secured a promise by the developer to make best efforts to rent to neighborhood businesses as opposed to destination chain stores, and to involve neighborhood residents in the design of the streetscape of the auto sales office.
  • Sustainability: The developer is mandated to report back in writing to the Community Board and the Council Member on the energy efficiency standards for each building. Energy efficiency measures with respect to fuel consumption and energy use will be incorporated into the building design resulting in at least 10% less energy consumption in building systems than the required New York State energy code in effect at the time of the building design. In addition, necessary storm water management language is included in the Restrictive Declaration.
  • Parking: The Special Permit was amended to allow 1500 parking spaces (up from 1260 allocated by the City Planning Commission), but the additional 240 spaces are self-park, and not valet parking. The garage will include car share spaces, bike parking and electrical charging stations.
  • Jobs: Riverside Center will be a union construction project, and the developer is committed to awarding no less than 15% of the total dollar value of the construction trade contracts and of the
    soft costs to M/WBE (Minority and Women Owned Businesses) firms.

To find out more, go to http://www.riversidecenternyc.com/ where Extell advertises and explains the new development.

Extell Development Company
800 3rd Ave # 4
New York, NY 10022-7649
(212) 712-6000


Recreation Center 59

The 59th Street Recreation Center, which is currently closed, is being renovated and is due to reopen in December 2011. Renovations of various types have been in planning stages since late 2001, when it was recommended that work be done on the center to increase gym space and keep the center up to code. Various West Side developers have given different levels of financial commitment to renovating the center, but now developer BCRE is prepared to oversee the use of the $2.5 million proffered by the Extell Management Company to construct an outdoor park and work on an Annex north of the current location on 60th St. According to the Department of Parks and Recreation, this new building should be completed by the end of 2011. The new Recreation Center will include, in addition to a new outdoor park, a renovated indoor pool, locker rooms, and new windows and skylights. According to DNA Info, there will also be a youth activities room and aerobics and fitness rooms. The Outdoor Space Park will be constructed in 2012.

Important Information

  • In 2004, Community Board 7 and Gale Brewer began talking to West side developers Brack Capital, Cambridge, and Ginsberg (ALGEN) about the possibility of renovating the 59th St. Recreation Center.
  • Extel has offerred $2.5-3 million (currently $1 million for the 60th St. Annex and $1.5 million for the Open Space Park Project), which, in addition to the $7-$8 million earmarked by the NYC Council with the strong backing of Gale Brewer, is enough to demolish the current location, build the outdoor park and begin preparing for new construction on the current site as well as building an annex across the street.
  • Commissioner Adrian Benepe of the Department of Parks and Recreation must sign off on these plans before any can go forward.
  • The new building (the annex and the entire 60th St. building) should be completed (including furniture and fitness equipment) by the end of 2011, but a plumber will have to be hired separately to ensure staying on schedule.
  • The pool will have no lifeguards directly after construction.
  • The park/Open Space project was given approval with no comments, though many pipes and manholes must be built to sanitize and contain the water.
  • The Open Space Project bidding process should be completed by December, and construction may take up to a year.
  • There will be another meeting in October (Date TBD) about the progress on both of these projects

Potential plans for the new Recreation Center

Developer Information:
885 3rd Ave
New York,  NY  10022-4834
(212) 308-7200
Extel Management
605 West 137th Street
New York , NY
(212) 784-0026
Read more at DNA Info.

207 West 75th St.

A sliver building has been proposed at 207 W 75th St. MA Architects, the developer, has already proposed the building to the New York City Department of Buildings and been rejected, which is standard for buildings in New York. In this case, the building violates ZR 23-692, which limits the height of a building to the street width or 100′-00″, whichever is less (from http://nysarch.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=32&Itemid=57). They now send the application, with help from Filing Representative Metropolis Group Inc. and lobbying firm Capolino+Company to the Building Services Authority (BSA) to apply for a waiver. They have not yet done this, but are expected to within the month.

Tax Block: 1167
Landmark Status: None

Important Information:

  • According to Community Board 7, which handles land use within their area, the developers have not yet sent in the second application, though it should be in not too long.
  • It is entirely standard (in fact, exceptions are almost nonexistent) for the DOB to offer an objection the first time a building application is given to them. They review zoning, then send the applicant to the BSA, at which point they may decide no to proceed or may file for special waivers.
  • CB7 will not be able to hear the application until September, when they resume hearing cases from the summer.
  • The effects on passersby cannot yet be known until more is known about the building plan.
  • However, it is clear that the co-op next door will be negatively affected. The plan is for the new building to be 15 stories high, which would block the view from many windows and harm the resale value of the apartments.
Contact Information
Developer: MA Architects
Name: Morris Adjmi
Address: 45 E 20th St. 11th floor
NY, NY 10003
Business Phone: 212-982-2020
Cell Phone: 917-776-9555
Email: MA@MA.com
Filing Representative: Metropolis Group Inc.
Name: Yenin Cabrera
Address: 22 Cortlandt St. 10th floor.
NY, NY 1007
Business Phone: 212-233-6344
Cell Phone: 917-575-5756
Email: yeninc@metropolisny.com
Lobbyist: Capalino+Company
Name: James F. Capalino
Address: The Woolworth Building
233 Boradway, Suite 850
NY, NY 10279
Business Phone: 212-616-5810
Cell Phone: 917-859-6245

Pier 97

Pier 97 has been, for the last several years, the home only of a sanitation facility and sanitation trucks owned by the Department of Sanitation. Now, under the direction of the Hudson River Trust and with fundraising from the Friends of the Hudson River, the Pier is being torn down, rebuilt and filled with recreational areas like the rest of the Piers.

Important Information:

  • The Department of Sanitation agreed to move the sanitation building to the 57th St. Garage across the street over eight years ago. The garage was to be built in 2003, but when the DoS had not followed through on their promise to build and move by 2005, the Friends of Hudson River Park sued the city to keep them accountable, winning $18 million in the settlement that is going into the current construction. Delays also included a fire at the building last year. Information can be found at http://www.ny1.com/content/top_stories/124965/fire-damages-sanitation-department-facility-on-pier.
  • To find out more about the difficulty in moving the Department of Sanitation, go to http://www.fohrp.org/news/default.aspx?&ArticleId=97
  • As of July 28, 2011, the building is concentrated on constructing the pilings which form the structural basis of the Pier.
  • The new pilings will be made of concrete and will last approximately 50 years, and are replacing outdated wooden pilings. This construction effort will last until the end of October, at which point, because it is taking place in water, construction cannot resume until next May. Land work will continue through the fall and winter.
  • If $8 million more of funding comes through, likely from both the state and the city, then construction of the actual pier and deck will continue in the Spring of 2012 and continue into the spring and summer. If all goes according to plan, the new Pier should be finished by early 2013.
  • The Pier will be part of Clinton Cove Park and will have a pier water taxi landing, a historic ship, a playground, basketball courts, open space and other amenities similar to those on other piers.
  • The inconveniences to constituents should be minimal. When the deck is built in 2012, the bike path may experience disruption and the walkway will be narrowed.

Plans for Pier 97

To find out more about Pier 97, see http://pier97.com/

Hudson Hill Condominium at 462 West 58th Street

Hudson Hill is one of the developments that has been in progress in CB4 and School District 2 over the past several years. Four brownstones on the lot were bought four years ago and torn down to make way for all new construction of this now completed building.

Block: 1067
Landmark Status: No

Architect: FXFowle Architects
Developer: Alchemy Properties
Manager: Pan Am Equities
Sales and marketing: Alchemy Properties
Sales office telephone number: (212) 732-0372
Sales started: October 2007
Website: http://www.hudsonhillcondo.com/

Important Information:

  • Because construction is completed, there should be no inconvenience in driving or walking around the Time Warner and Columbus Circle Area
  • There have been 70 complaints, all registered 2009 or prior. They complain mainly of debris (which is no longer an issue) and unsafe site conditions. This resulted in six accused violations, of which three were found to be in violation.
  • There is no record of the property transfer on ACRIS, the Department of Finance’s database.
To find out more, see Street Easy and the NYC Dept. of Buildings.

101 W. 87th St.

Yair Levy had planned to convert this building into condominiums, but underwent foreclosure and was accused of fraud. It was then bought by Fisher Brothers and BlackRock and is being developed by Bazbaz Development. To find out more about this deal and the fallout, click here and here.


Developer: Balbaz Development
President: Sonny Bazbaz
Attorney for Fisher Brothers: Martin Heistein (Belkin Burden Wenig & Goldman, LLP)
Property Manager: David Frankel (Flatiron Real Estate Advisors, LLC)
Sales and marketing: Halstead
Sales office telephone: 212-381-2552

Important Information:

  • 101 W 87th St has 2 beds, 2 baths, approximately 1,302 square feet, and was built in 1987
  • The developer has proposed to shut down the only working elevator for 2 days despite there being at least four inhabitants of the building who cannot manage stairs.
  • The ventilators in the building are not working and need to be fixed.
  • People currently have access without being announced.  This is a recurrent issue.

200 Riverside Boulevard

200 Riverside Boulevard in Lincoln Square has been developed. It takes up the entire 182 foot block front of Freedom Place.

Block: 1171

Landmark Status: None

Realty Service: Massey Knakal
Architect: Costas Kondylis & Partners

Important Information:

  • There have been 38 alleged violations, of which 16 were found to be in violation. Complaints were minor, mainly about things left in the street.
Find out more at streeteasy and NYC DOB.