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LICH developer reveals plans for a 28-story tower

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The developer that now owns the site of the old Long Island College Hospital in Cobble Hill just revealed another part of the gargantuan housing complex is has planned for the property.

Builder Fortis Property Group filed plans on Dec. 22 for a 28-story tower on Hicks Street between Atlantic Avenue and Pacific Street, according to Department of Buildings documents and as first reported by real-estate blog New York YIMBY.

The ritzy building will have a pool and gym on its basement levels and 110 units — some of which will take up half-a-floor each.

The property is on the same L-shaped lot as the one on which Fortis is building a new medical center for New York University Langone. That is supposed to go on the corner of Atlantic Avenue and Hicks Street, making it likely this high-rise will be closer to Pacific Street.

The building appears to be a bit of change from Fortis’s most recent designs for the whole complexreleased in October 2015 — which had a 35-story building a little further down Pacific Street, closer to Henry Street, and a 28-story tower across the other side of Pacific Street.

Fortis filed plans for two other residential towers earlier this month — a 46-unit 17-story building at Hicks Street and Atlantic Avenue and a 30-unit 15-story one on Henry Street between Pacific and Amity streets.

The developer still hasn’t revealed what it has in store for the other half of the block that will contain this latest building, or whole block bounded by Pacific, Amity, Henry, and Hicks streets.

The company had hoped to build even more units on the sprawling site of the old infirmary, but couldn’t win local residents and pols over to the idea of rezoning the land, even with the promise of building space for a new school and some below-market housing on the new site.

Still, many Cobble Hillians don’t love this version of the housing development much either — they worry it will tower over their low-rise historic neighborhood and bring too many newcomers to the area.

Reach reporter Lauren Gill at lgill@cnglocal.com or by calling (718) 260–2511. Follow her on Twitter @laurenk_gill
Posted 10:26 am, December 28, 2016
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Reasonable discourse

Judi Francis from Cobble Hill says:
There is no legal case to stop an “As of Right” deal. Ironically, the developer has also found legitimate ways - with an 800 room dormitory - to maximize the site to within 80% of the density of what ULURP would have given him in the first place! But now there won’t be any benefits for the community whatsoever (i.e. no affordable units, no community say in where the height and bulk goes, what it looks like, etc.). This is the greatest irony of all - the fear mongering about density all the while the system has allowed it anyway, but without any community say! It was a false premise, too, the issue of density - our city is growing and Cobble Hill must own up to its share. But it could have been managed with ULURP, to protect the historic resources and beauty of the district. They didn't negotiate in good faith with Fortis, and our politicians got greedy by not downzoning the historic block on Henry in the first place...wanting developer donations and other demagogury intended to feather their own nests.

The only good thing coming out of the Trump presidency is retaining Fed Prosecutor Preet Brahara. But, alas, too late for historic Cobble Hill.
Dec. 30, 2016, 9:32 am
NN from Boerum Hill says:
I agree w/ Judi above. The rezoning proposal was a much better. The Cobble Hill Association (and, I hate to say it, Brad Lander and Daniel Squadron) really screwed over the neighborhood by pushing for this as-of-right option. Now we'll have giant towers even closer to the historic districts, and no new school, park or affordable housing.
Dec. 30, 2016, 4:47 pm
Mary from Cobble Hill says:
The ULURP would have been much worse. Another 20% of residents would have added more bodies to what is going to become a way to busy area. That proposed school would have had no outdoor space and was little back for the extra head count added to the area. Fortis didn't want it because it was a "fair exchange" for the area. They wanted the ULURP to make more money by addicting more square footage and more bodies = more cash $$ for Fortis. Don't buy in to the fodder they fed us. The Cobble Hill association and local politicians were at least right about pointing out the issues with ULURP. And the Association hadn't told Fortis they would negotiate for a ULURP alternative, they just wanted it to be reasonable. Fortis didn't. Hence, they just the "as of right" option because it involves no negotiation with nearby residents or the City.
Jan. 2, 4:48 pm
JQ from Cobble Hill says:
I disagree with "Mary"-- the Fortis as-of-right proposal will place the center of population -- and two new high rises-- directly adjacent to the historic district instead of on the corner of Atlantic Avenue and Hicks Street on wide streets, near mass transit and close to the park where much great population can be absorbed. Hard to know for sure, but looks like the very ambitious ULURP plan (created by De Blasio, Alicia Glenn and Lander-- not Fortis) was loaded down with too many "community benefits" and that's what caused the project to balloon out of scale in the first place. Fortis may share some blame, but it is not fair to not to include the elected officials involved in creating the mess.
Jan. 3, 3:14 pm
Jeff says:
Mary is correct. The overall size is the key issue, not how it's placed. (Or did you think that rearranging the deck chairs was going to keep the Titanic afloat?)

Frankly, the neighborhood is f*cked under either plan. I'm glad Fortis is going to take the money and get out. I pity the slobs who buy into those towers: far from everything, minimal city services, BQE shut for years....
Jan. 5, 10:46 pm

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