When the Lightstone Group took control of the old Toll Brothers site at Bond Street and the Gowanus Canal, the developer planned to seek "minor modifications" to the buildings' size. They were supposed to go before City Planning back in November, but the meeting was delayed because of Hurricane Sandy. Now, councilman Brad Lander (via Pardon Me for Asking) reports that Lightstone is abandoning these minor modifications and proceeding with the project "as of right." So what does this mean for the development? We're not sure, exactly, but we've reached out to Lightstone for more information.
The biggest change Lightstone proposed was upping the number of units from 447 condos to 700 rentals. No additional building height was sought, but the modifications included changes to the open space, variations in the base height, and relocation of parking garage entrances. PMFA notes that the plans have now been reconfigured to move forward within the current zoning regulations, and "Lightstone has pulled away slightly from the water and increased the grade of First Street."
Neighbors have been against Lightstone's plans from the start (if they didn't like Toll Brothers plans, why would they like this?), and during Hurricane Sandy, the development site flooded, which only increased community opposition. Lightstone reps insist that the plans account for flooding and climate change, and elevation drawings show the ground floor of the new buildings will sit one foot above the Hurricane Sandy flood line. Whether or not any of this is affected by Lightstone NOT seeking minor modifications has yet to be determined. As soon as we hear back, we will update this post accordingly.
· Important Update And Meeting Regarding Lightstone's Proposed Gowanus Project [PMFA]
· Lightstone Group coverage [Curbed]