NYC Board to Reexamine Approval of NYM’s Variances

Preserve Park Slope Announces Zoning Agency Hearing on Previously-Granted Methodist Hospital Variances and Support from Park Slope Civic Council for Reopening the Variance Process

NEW YORK: Preserve Park Slope (PPS), a neighborhood organization with nearly 1,000 supporters, announced today that the New York City Board of Standards and Appeals (BSA) has scheduled a public hearing on December 16, 2014, on PPS’s request that the BSA reconsider its prior decision to grant variances from the zoning laws to allow NY Methodist Hospital (NYM) to build a massive high rise in Park Slope, Brooklyn. This highly unusual public hearing was scheduled based on new evidence that NYM’s plans are not yet set (contrary to representations made during a lengthy BSA process earlier this year) and that a smaller building could meet NYM’s needs for more space. The Park Slope Civic Council, an organization that has advocated for enhancing the quality of life in Park Slope for decades, is supporting PPS’s application to reopen the variance process.

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Why We Asked the BSA to Reconsider Approval of Methodist’s Variances

In a virtually unprecedented step, the New York City Board of Standards and Appeals (BSA), the City agency that decides whether to grant variances from zoning, has scheduled a December 16 public hearing on Preserve Park Slope’s request that it reconsider whether NYM should be allowed to build a massive high rise in in the midst of the Park Slope Historic District. Preserve Park Slope’s request is based on evidence that has come to light, casting serious doubt on whether NYM satisfies the legal criteria for the variances.

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Update on Lawsuit, Press Coverage, and New Video

Update on Lawsuit

New York Methodist and the Board of Standards and Appeals separately filed court papers responding to our lawsuit, and, as expected, they are vigorously defending their actions and decisions.  Their legal papers present narratives of extensive community engagement, “comprehensive, exacting, and good faith dialogue,” and “design features to enhance compatibility with the architectural styles common in Park Slope.”  Also as expected, they are asking the Court to largely rubber-stamp (or in legal terms, “defer”) to the BSA’s decision-making. Read more

Press Roundup – September 2014

Moody’s 8/5/14 Moody’s upgrades New York Methodist Hospital to Baa1; outlook positive
Business Wire 8/8/14 Fitch Rates New York Methodist (NY) 2014 Revs ‘A-‘; Outlook Stable
Brooklyn brief 8/18/14 On a Range of New Developments, Legal Protections Leave Critics Wanting
Brooklyn Daily Eagle 10/1/14 A checklist of New York Methodist Hospital’s doomed buildings
Brooklyn Daily Eagle 10/1/14 Get a good look at New York Methodist Hospital’s historic buildings before the wrecking ball swings
Brooklyn Daily Eagle 10/1/14 Did you know? New York Methodist Hospital owns this Park Slope property, too
Brooklyn Daily Eagle 10/1/14 Park Slope properties near New York Methodist Hospital’s expansion site are worth a bundle

Preserve Park Slope Sues to Halt Massive Hospital Expansion in the Heart of Park Slope Historic District

Preserve Park Slope Sues to Halt Massive Hospital Expansion in the Heart of Park Slope Historic District

Legal Action Seeks To Reverse Recent Resolution Allowing New York Methodist Hospital To Build Far Beyond Current Zoning Limitations

(BROOKLYN, NY) – July 30, 2014 – Preserve Park Slope (www.preserveparkslope.org), a not-for-profit community group dedicated to maintaining the residential character of Park Slope, Brooklyn, along with several individuals, today served New York Methodist Hospital (“NYM”) and the New York City Board of Standards and Appeals (“BSA”) with a lawsuit seeking to halt construction of an oversized medical facility in Park Slope.  Among the legal documents served are affidavits from two former City Planning Commissioners, an eminent architectural historian, the executive director of the Historic Districts Council and architects with expertise in historical preservation, who object to the proposed project in its current form. Read more

Preserve Park Slope files lawsuit challenging zoning variances

Last month the NYC Board of Standards and Appeals approved the variances sought by New York Methodist to build a massive medical facility — the equivalent of a 14-story high rise — in the heart of Park Slope. To fulfill our mission of protecting our community’s quality of life and the essential character of our neighborhood, attorneys for Preserve Park Slope filed suit in State Supreme Court. A copy of our petition can be found here (PDF file). Read more