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September 19th, 2008

PRESERVATION ALERT: TRUMP SOHO WANTS TO RISE EVEN HIGHER!

by You the Reader

An email from Andrew Berman, Executive Director of the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation:

“I have some important news regarding the Trump SoHo ‘Condo-Hotel,’ and the fight to prevent more such developments.

Trump: Last week it was revealed that the Department of Buildings (DOB) approved an additional, 43rd floor for the 454 ft. tall Trump SoHo ‘Condo-Hotel.’ However, a review by GVSHP of DOB’s records shows that the developer has recently submitted permit applications referring to a 44th floor, one floor even higher than DOB already approved. GVSHP has written to DOB to express outrage over the approval of the 43rd floor, and questioning the new reference to a “44th floor.” We have urged DOB not to approve any additional height for the building, and to rescind the existing approvals. We have also filed a Freedom of Information request to review all of DOB’s relevant files for the project, to uncover and refute the Department’s justification for approving these permits in the first place.

GVSHP also continues to work closely with the SoHo Alliance in their legal challenge in NY State Supreme Court against the City’s original approval of the Trump SoHo ‘Condo-Hotel.’

Rezoning To Prevent More Trump SoHo Towers: GVSHP has long called for changes to the zoning for the area around the Trump SoHo ‘Condo-Hotel’ south of Houston Street to prevent more such massive developments. However, the City has said that there was no need to rezone this area or its surroundings because the current zoning “reflected the consensus of the Community Board, local civic groups, and elected officials.” GVSHP refuted that claim, but the City has still refused to act.

However, this summer, the City approved a developer-requested rezoning of part of this area. GVSHP opposed this rezoning, which did not address the need to prevent more Trump SoHo-type developments. However, now that the City has reconsidered its position to rezone part of the area for developers, GVSHP is again calling upon them to respond to community requests to change the zoning for this area to prevent more out-of-scale development like Trump SoHo ‘Condo-Hotel.’

HOW TO HELP:
Write to the City Planning Commission urging that they change the zoning for the neighborhood around the Trump SoHo ‘Condo-Hotel’ to prohibit development of that size and scale ever again [Click here] for a sample letter you can use.

Best,
Andrew Berman, Executive Director
Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation”

To join GVSHP or support the preservation efforts, click here.

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