Stop Large-scale, Luxury Development in NYC Now
Stop Large-scale, Luxury Development in NYC Now
AMENDMENT 08/11/20: This call of this petition has been expanded (8/8/20). Its first version focused on Western Queens. Because of the support it received, it now extends a city-wide call, inviting all residents who are sick-and-tired of large-scale developments and wealthy developers destroying our neighborhoods to sign on.
Grassroots groups are invited to co-sponser. Complete this form or email us at jfacoalition[at]gmail[dot]com.
While living conditions in NYCHA are deteriorating, our elected officials tell us there is no public money for repairs. Instead, they want to hand our buildings and apartments over to predatory private firms whose interest in profit will quite literally overshadow our needs as tenants and human beings.
Meanwhile, the city pours our public money into supporting proposals and projects for several private, mostly luxury developments just next door. This includes $14.4 billion to deck over Sunnyside Yards, which is more than one-third of the estimated cost to address repair needs across NYCHA developments.
In addition to redirecting public money away from public needs, these projects also cause surrounding rents to rise, displacing existing community residents, small businesses, manufacturing firms, and working artists. And we see time and again that this type of luxury development does not yield real opportunities for economic empowerment among working-class residents.
And the luxury developments right on the water, in LIC and in Flushing and in Gowanus (ETC), ignore the impending realities of climate change: where will the flood waters go?
Enough is enough!
We need public money to be invested in repairing and shoring up the existing infrastructure our community relies on—sewers, schools, mass transit, public housing and more.
Towards this end, we call for a moratorium—an immediate halt— to all large-scale, city- and/or developer-led rezonings and developments in NYC.
These specifically include:
1. The huge luxury development at Anable Basin on the LIC waterfront, proposed by a group of developers calling themselves “YourLIC.” This plan calls for 12 million sq ft of unaffordable office space and apartments, with 70-story towers in a low-lying flood zone.
2. The “new city” the NYCEDC wants to build over Sunnyside Yards, which would cost taxpayers $14.4 billion up front, or one third of what NYCHA, city-wide, needs for repairs.
3. The 5-block upzoning near Steinway Street in Astoria, requested by Kaufman Astoria Studios, Silverstein Properties, and Bedrock Real Estate Partners, which will replace manufacturing firms and parking lots with expensive housing and low-wage service job “opportunities”.
4. The massive luxury development called for in Flushing, a low-income, mostly immigrant community. Developers want to erect another mini-city on the water for the wealthy, with few affordable units, and parkland that would primarily serve the new residents, not those already living in the community.We are fighting for development and investment by and for the people, and this is only the beginning.
5. The rezoning of Gowanus which is the largest such effort currently being considered in NYC.
6. The Landmarked Historic Brooklyn Academy District NEWLY NO LONGER EXISTS because the co-opted deBlasio Commissioner sell-outs-namely the Landmarks Preservation Commission -has given away their own 1978 commitment to protect the iconic Williamsburg Bank Building and the narrow side street which has 18th century 3-4 story rowhouses and is about to be invaded by a 22 story tower being built for luxe condos. The corrupt Administration-the henchmen for Big Real Estate -i.e. the City Planning Commission (aka the Dept of Rezoning!) and the bought politicians have pillaged our city...our story is your story and unless and until we thwart the bums in our local government jointly-as they divide and conquer-there will be more displacement and ever more disparate racial impacts.
A Special Note from Human Scale NYC: Upzoning and the consequent building spree it engenders does not lower housing prices and research has proven that. Upzoning results- counter to all the silly theorizing of the Furman Center and the De Blasio administration - in higher prices, displacement of residents and small businesses, demolition of historic areas, and disfiguring height that destroys the streetscape and livability of the city. If the City Council and Mayor want affordable housing like we do, then the city must build 100%, permanently affordable housing on the land trust model. There are plenty of ways of finance that. Down with displacement! Down with destruction of our city!
Artist Studio Affordability Project
Astoria Tenants Union
Greater Flushing Chamber of Commerce
Hearts Across Queens
Long Island City Coalition
MinKwon Center for Community Action
Party for Socialism & Liberation
Preserve Our Brooklyn Neighborhood
Queens Action Council
Stop Sunnyside Yards
Take Back NYC
Voices of Gowanus
Western Queens CLT