The Possible End of Chinatown as We Know It
Three towers are planned for the waterfront of the Two Bridges area of Manhattan. The area just north of the Brooklyn and Manhattan Bridges. They include a 660-foot tall building at 247 Cherry Street developed by JDS Development, two 50-story towers at 260 South Street from L+M Partners and CIM Group, and a 724-foot tall building at 275 South Street from Starrett Development.
Due to the Department of City Planning's decision to required the developers to go through the uniform land use review procedure (ULURP) because the development is only a “minor modification” in the eyes of the commission. But in the eyes of the community though, the four towers that are planned will destroy the neighborhood and displace the mostly immigrant families that live in Chinatown.
While the city is in need of affordable apartments, only 25% of the 2700 apartments in these four towers will be designated affordable. But then you ask, affordable for whom? The lowest requirement for income is $35,000. The average income in Chinatown is about $30,000. And as we all know, once those towers are built, or sooner, landlords will try to evict tenants throughout the community. During the hearing, two people from Cherry St. indicated that they were already threatened with eviction.
In a hearing at the City Planning Commission on Wednesday, October 17, 104 people signed up to testify. Except for a few associated with the development, most were passionately against the Towers. Included in the list were Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer, City Council Woman Margaret Chin, and Assembly Woman, Yuh-Line Niou. All three were against the building of the Towers. Gale Brewer demanded that the Planning Commission change their decision to forego ULURP.
This is the second half of our show where David Eisenbach and Ray Rogers explains the Small Business Jobs Survival Act.
Please check below to see how you can contact your City Council Member and tell them to support the Small Business Jobs Survival Act, without changes to it's current configuration.
We need the help of every New Yorker to save small business in NYC. Gentrification and greedy land lords are forcing the closure of small business all across the city. The Small Business Jobs Survival Act (SBJSA) is a bill that has been introduced in the NYC City Council that would give commercial tenants three specific rights: A minimum 10-year lease with the right to renewal, so they can better plan for the future of their business. Equal negotiation terms when it comes time to renew their lease with recourse to binding arbitration by a 3rd party if fair terms can not be found. Restrictions to prevent landlords from passing their property taxes on to small business owners. The law would create a quick step by step process to arrive at fair lease terms. One which is controlled by both parties and can be stopped at anytime by mutual consent. An arbitration process, which gives both parties equal opportunity to present their arguments for their reasonable terms of the lease. A process which takes into consideration the unique nature of every business and every business community, where the arbitrator’s decision is guided by strict criteria and based upon a case by case situation to decide fair and reasonable lease terms. Below is a list of City Council members, please call them and tell them to pass the Small Business Jobs Survival Act without changes.Read more