Bill Ackman’s Howard Hughes corp dealt major blow on Seaport plans

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shop_south-street-seaport_aerialDecember 12, 2014- Hedge fund titan Bill Ackman, Chairman of Howard Hughes corporation, was dealt a major set back by the CB1 on Wednesday when the Landmarks Committee of Community Board 1 (CB1) declined to vote on the plans to build a tall tower near the Brooklyn Bridge, along with a shopping mall. The CB1 vote is required before City Counsel can cast a vote, which would then allow the city’s Uniform Land Use Review Procedure (ULURP) to either approve or reject the plans.

By deferring this into 2015, it opens up the possibility of yet another entire year of delays. The local officials, Margaret Chin and Gale Brewer, still seem adamantly opposed to the Hughes plan, particularly the tall residential tower. However, the key city official, Kyle Kimball, supports the Hughes plan, and the mayor is not taking sides publicly.

Notably, the newly formed “Seaport Friends” mailed out expensive promotional fliers before the Wednesday meeting. The three “mothers” deny that they are funded by the Howard Hughes corporation. Also in attendance at the CB1 meeting were dozens of “supporters” of the Hughes plan, wearing blue and yellow T-shirts. Howard Hughes has clearly hired PR and marketing firms in an attempt to get past the City Hall obstruction.

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2 Responses to Bill Ackman’s Howard Hughes corp dealt major blow on Seaport plans

  1. Diana Switaj says:

    Hi Steven,

    I saw your article on the HHC proposed Seaport development. You say CB1 declined to vote on the plans. This is not true. Because the LPC is so comprehensive, we’ve split the review of the application into two meetings, the first was the Dec. 10th meeting and the second is scheduled for January 5th.

    The meeting on Wednesday was scheduled for the HHC presentation (which took about an hour), some question and comments from the committee, and we had about an hour and a half for public comment.

    The second meeting is on January 5th where the resolution will be discussed and voted on.

    I just wanted to clarify this, since a vote was never scheduled for the Dec. 10th meeting.

    Please let me know if you have any questions, which I’d be happy to answer. I’ll be out of the office for meetings the rest of the day but if you have any questions I can get back to you on Monday.

    Best,
    Diana

    Diana Switaj
    Director of Planning and Land Use
    Community Board #1
    49-51 Chambers Street, Room 715
    New York, NY 10007

  2. Editor says:

    Diana

    It is semantics. By the CB1 “scheduling” two votes, it pushes this into 2015.

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