Saturday, January 16, 2016

An Update on the Proposed Redevelopment of the LICH site

A few days before Christmas, the Cobble Hill Association and all the elected officials who have been involved on the community’s behalf were asked to attend a meeting at City Hall because Mayor de Blasio's administration was taking a direct interest in the redevelopment process and had a new ULURP proposal to present.

The CHA agreed to participate in the meeting so we could understand the new ULURP proposal as fully as possible.  We made it clear to the administration that we were not indicating any acceptance or agreement with City Hall or Fortis as part of the process of information gathering that the meeting represented.

CHA representatives had also attended a December meeting where NYU described their plans for the new medical center to be developed on the former LICH site, regardless of what type of residential development occurs.  After this meeting, CHA and the Brooklyn Heights Association, which also attended, sent a letter to NYU outlining a number of concerns about infrastructure issues relating to the medical center.

In the pre-Christmas City Hall meeting, two members of the de Blasio administration outlined a new ULURP plan that includes a reduction in market-rate residential and affordable housing square footage, but a larger school than previously proposed.  During the meeting, CHA representatives made it clear that the plan does not fully address the community's issues with the original ULURP proposal, and that our information from the NYU meeting and the proposal of a larger school raised many infrastructure- and traffic-related issues.  The City Hall representatives asked that the CHA to develop a list of information requirements and that we attend a second meeting early in the new year.

The list of information requirements requested after the first City Hall meeting included questions relating to basic infrastructure issues, such as traffic, parking, safety, access and entrances to the medical center and school, and other subjects relating to neighborhood open spaces and environmental issues.  At the post-New Year meeting at City Hall, some information was provided and additional information promised.

CHA is continuing to pursue information gathering on all the elements of the new ULURP plan and intends to communicate its best understanding of the plan to the community at the earliest possible time.

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