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Upper West Side's forthcoming tallest tower won’t rise anytime soon

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The DOB has asked the developers to submit revised plans in order to move forward

The former synagogue at the site of the residential tower.
Via Google Maps

Upper West Side residents have won a temporary reprieve now that the city’s Department of Buildings has brought construction to a halt at 200 Amsterdam Avenue, the proposed site of the neighborhood’s tallest tower.

In May, news emerged that a local organization, the Committee for Environmentally Sound Development, had filed a zoning challenge with the DOB over the project at 200 Amsterdam Avenue, saying that the project wasn’t compliant with the existing zoning laws.

The DOB agreed and ruled on Tuesday that the developers had neglected to certify the combination of lots that would eventually hold this 668-foot tower, the West Side Rag reports. The agency also ruled that the project didn’t adhere to the open space requirement for that particular site.

City Council member Helen Rosenthal and Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer had thrown their support behind the zoning challenge a couple of months ago, and hailed the DOB’s decision a first victory.

“This is not a final victory,” Rosenthal said in a statement. “But this action does represent significant progress, and, most importantly, it is evidence that when we work together, and when we drill down into the weeds of policy, we can make our voices heard.”

What the site looks like right now.
Via West Side Rag

In response to the DOB’s ruling, a spokesperson for SJP Properties, issued the following statement to the West Side Rag:

“The review has been underway for a period of time, and the developer is completely confident that this process will confirm that the zoning for 200 Amsterdam is entirely valid.”

SJP Properties is collaborating with Mitsui Fudosan America to build the skyscraper. The developers will now likely have to revise their plans and meet the requirements of the DOB before they are allowed to resume construction.

The old Lincoln Square synagogue that once called this site home has already been demolished. Plans for this condo tower were first announced in the fall of 2015. Elkus Manfredi was brought on to design the building, and CetraRuddy was roped in for the interiors the following year. The developers intended to build a 51-story tower with 112 apartments, and medical offices on the ground floor.

Correction 7/12/17: According to the Department of Buildings, construction on the site hasn’t been halted per se as the agency has not yet issued a stop work order. The developers won’t be able to build the tower as planned, but they can still do minor work on site.