Blumenfeld Development Group and Forest City Ratner have been making the public meeting rounds with their plans for 1,000 new apartments spread out between three towers atop the East River Plaza mall. A DNAinfo article reveals that they are planning to make the apartments 75 percent market rate and 25 percent affordable (as opposed to the usual 80-20 split) and the rest of the piece is about the neighbors realizing that having three enormous towers constructed in their immediate vicinity might come with a few problems.
"There's nothing wrong with economic development as long as it's done right, with the interest of the community, quality of life and the preservation of what the community represents," said Joseph Delerme, a lifetime resident of the neighborhood. The developers have gone out of their way to schedule community meetings, although some, like filmmaker Andrew Padilla, think it's all for show, arguing that Blumenfeld and Ratner "are only reaching out to the community because they need their support for tax breaks and re-zoning." According to Delerme, some of the proposals that the community has come up with so far include:
following the 50/30/20 affordable housing model, creating a small vocational school, a fund for small business owners in the area, and helping preserve an existing community garden on Pleasant Avenue. In other words, they might get to keep the garden.
· Locals Raise Concerns Over East River Plaza Residential Towers [DNAinfo]
· Here Are the Three Towers That May Top the East River Plaza [Curbed]