Pierhouse opponents had their day in court and won a small victory in their months-long battle against the condo and hotel building rising beside Pier 1 in Brooklyn Bridge Park. An activist group called Save the View Now filed a lawsuit against developer Toll Brothers and the Brooklyn Bridge Park Corporation, alleging that the new building's height exceeds legal limits and blocks the view of the Brooklyn Bridge, which is supposed to be protected along the promenade. In April, a judge ordered a temporary restraining order restricting construction on part of the site (but not even the tall part), and now the Brooklyn Eagle reports that the TRO has been extended by 45 days.
STVN contends that Pierhouse far exceeds the height restrictions that required the north building to be no more than 100 feet tall and the south building, where the TRO applies, to be 55 feet tall. Currently, the top of the north building does stop at 100 feet, but there is a 30-foot bulkhead on top of that. In arguments before State Supreme Court Justice Lawrence Knipel, STVN's attorneys "made their case that the city's zoning rules don't apply to the project, and that the park's board played loose with the facts and obscured the final plans," according to the Brooklyn Eagle.
The developer's attorneys dismissed these claims and argued that the lawsuit exceeds a statute of limitations, so its moot no matter what.
Even though it seems highly unlikely that Toll Brothers would be ordered to lop off the top of Pierhouse, STVN feels pretty good about the situation. One local told the Eagle, "I felt at the end the judge was fairly sympathetic with the ideas and he asked questions – what is a bulkhead, what are the mechanicals?" Sympathetic, or just completely unaware of how buildings work?
· Judge Extends TRO on Brooklyn Bridge Park's Pierhouse Project [BK Eagle]
· All Pierhouse coverage [Curbed]