Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher File Objections to NYU 2031

NYU Faculty Against the Sexton Plan and the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation have retained Gibson Dunn to file suit against the NYU 2031 plan. Gibson Dunn has submitted a Statement of Objections to NYU 2031 to the NY City Planning Commission (CPC).

An excerpt from the statement:
What is at issue here is whether NYU can justify, and whether the CPC will endorse, the severe impacts on the Greenwich Village community, and particularly the NYU faculty,
of this massive rezoning. Can NYU justify, and will the CPC will allow, these adverse impacts all to facilitate a 20-year, 2.2-million square-foot construction project concentrated in the two-block epicenter of one of the City's most treasured, historic neighborhoods? Can NYU justify, and will the CPC approve, trampling the inherent character of the neighborhood just to meet "needs" far afield from NYU's core academic mission, including: (i) nearly 200,000 square feet devoted to a hotel and retail space (which this neighborhood certainly does not need); (ii) another 200,000 square feet for a gymnasium and performing arts center (which could be located elsewhere); (iii) a New York City public school (which the Department of Education has not requested and may not want); (iv) more faculty housing (even though NYU is leaving many existing units empty and combining others); and (v) and more classrooms (even though NYU's student population will remain essentially flat).[1]

[1] At the April 25 hearing, NYU representatives were asked about many of these issues, and they responded to some, not all, and promised follow-up information. None has been provided as far as we can tell. Given the enormity of this project and its anticipated significant adverse impacts, it would be arbitrary and capricious for the CPC to accept NYU's representations without thorough documentation and review, by the epe and the public.

The document is available online at http://nyufasp.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/05/2012-05-07-GDC-CPC-Submission.pdf.

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