It's hard to know the odds of a highly ambitious development on the shores of the Gowanus Canal in the middle of one of the biggest financial meltdowns since the Great Depression, but we can report that a committee of the local community board gave a thumbs up to the Toll Brothers last night. To refresh the memory: the Toll Bros. want special zoning approval from the city to build 447 condos on the Gowanus Canal. Despite the expected amount of hooting from outraged residents who'd rather have feral dogs running the streets than Robert Toll building something, only one land use subcommittee member voted against the firm, which has already poured $365,000 into lobbying for approval. Local blogger PMFA writes "no amount of testimony from concerned residents at last night's meeting, no concerns about pathogens in the waters of the canal, nor warnings that the land is in a flood zone were able to sway a majority of our board members from voting yes for Toll's spot rezoning." There is still a long land use approval process ahead and the full community board has to vote, but that could just be background noise given the shaky finances of the Toll firm and questions about who will lend megabucks for luxe condos on a canal that is literally an open sewer every time it rains. Not to be skeptical or anything because Gowanus, as we all know, rocks.
· CB6 Committee Votes Yes to Toll Bros. Project [PMFA]
· CB6 Okays Toll Brothers Spot Rezoning [Brownstoner]
· Toll Brothers Project Ok'd By Commmunity Board Committee [GL]