BP Markowitz Statement on Domino Rezoning

No link, so I’ll post in its entirety:

June 30, 2010


“I commend Speaker Christine Quinn for leading the Council on this issue, Council Member Steve Levin, the community for its input and Refinery LLC for its ambitious plan to transform Brooklyn’s gorgeous yet under-utilized waterfront into a vibrant mix of contemporary uses—including recreational, commercial and residential.

In my land use role, I always seek significant community benefits from developers asking permission to begin lucrative projects—such as more affordable housing, access to public space, the inclusion of amenities like supermarkets, the creation of jobs, use of local labor and construction supply companies and the improvement of residents’ quality of life—and this project was no different.

In keeping with my recommendations, I am pleased that a request for additional parking has been removed, the ‘shadowing’ impact on Grand Ferry Park has been reduced, there were efforts made to locate a school at the site and affordable housing has been included as part of the final plan. However, it is disappointing that not all of the affordable housing is guaranteed to be permanent, and there is no legally binding commitment to build elderly housing or a supermarket.

Additionally, my recommendation for possible artisan and creative economy spaces was not included, and rather than cutting towers as was done by City Council, I had requested cuts on the upland block which were not adopted, including height reductions and more rear yard open space to provide better quality of living for what would likely be affordable apartments.

Because there is no legal obligation to create a supermarket, elderly housing and artisan spaces, nor any guarantees that all of the affordable housing will be ‘affordable forever,’ it is my hope that the developer will act in good faith—per a letter dated April 8, 2010, provided to me—to make every possible effort to make these a reality. I will seriously consider directing my housing development funds to the project if that can help make these community benefits a part of the New Domino.”