DUTCH KILLS COMMUNITY ADVOCACY UNIT: THE UNIT
PO BOX 8070 LONG ISLAND CITY NY 11101
For Immediate Release
The ‘Unit’ Opposes Hardship Claim by Hotel Developer Shut Down By City
Dutch Kills Residents to Defend Community Against Developer at Board of Standards & Appeals Hearing. Press Invited.
Public Hearing: #300-08A (21 of 150 on the agenda)
Date: Tuesday, January 26 2010
Time: 10:00 AM
Location: 40 Rector Street, 6th floor, Hearing Room E.
Hotel developer Steven Bahar is asking the Board of Standards & Appeals (BSA) in an upcoming public hearing to overlook the problems and violations that plagued his hotel project in Dutch Kills on the basis of “financial hardship”, thus allowing continual construction of his hotel even though it will violate the new zoning laws that limit tall buildings.
The NYC Department of Buildings, for reasons ranging from unsafe working conditions to damaging neighboring properties, repeatedly stopped Mr. Bahar’s project, currently under construction on 27th Street in Dutch Kills, Long Island City. As a result of being shut down by the City, Mr. Bahar was unable to finish the foundation of his hotel before Dutch Kills was re-zoned in October 2008 to restrict the construction of tall buildings.
The Dutch Kills Community Advocacy Unit (aka The Unit) urges that this public hearing be covered by the media. We believe that Bahar will be the first of many hotel developers who will cry “hardship” to circumvent the Department of Buildings and the zoning laws to allow their stalled projects to go forward. We are confident that Mr. Bahar’s “hardship” claim will be turned down and the ensuing publicity will discourage other hotel developers from trying the same.
The Unit was formed in October 2009 as an advocate for the needs for the local resident of Dutch Kills. This was in the wake of the re-zoning process that was urged by Dutch Kills residents to preserve the residential ambiance of our neighborhood. The re-zoning was repeatedly delayed. During the delay, permits were issued to no less than 14 hotel projects, including Mr. Bahar’s, thus allowing out-of-scale commercial buildings to invade quiet residential blocks. A large portion of these hotels is in foreclosure; many are now half-built hulks, blocking the light of many Dutch Kills residents.
Our legal counsel, Stephen A. Harrison, Attorney-At-Law, advised us that the claim of financial hardship is often successful at a BSA hearing unless the community makes a good showing in protest of it. Thus we would like to stress again, the importance of the media covering this hearing. The local residents of Dutch Kills have to abide by the law and there is no reason why developers cannot do the same.
For additional information, please contact:
Barbara Lorinz, Director
Stephen A. Harrison, Attorney-At-Law
544 Bay Ridge Parkway
Brooklyn, NY 11209