Thursday, July 26, 2012

Coverage of the 44-1 Council Vote for NYU 2031

NYU 2031 Approved with Modifications [The Nation]

The University That’s Eating New York! [The Nation]

City Council approves NYU expansion plan for Greenwich Village [Gotham Gazette]

Council O.K.’s N.Y.U. plan; Antis booted out before vote [The Vilager]

Big NYU expansion passes final hurdle [Crain's New York]]

NYU Expansion Wins Near-Unanimous Approval From City Council [Gothamist]

NYU Expansion Critics Tossed Out of City Council Chambers Before 'Yes' Vote [DNAinfo]

City Council Approves NYU 2031 Expansion [Village Voice]

NYU 2031 plan wins key vote by Council committee [Chelsea Voice]

City Council Passes NYU's Village Expansion Plan [Curbed NY]

Council Approves NYU Expansion Plan [WNYC]

New York Council Approves NYU Expansion Over Neighbor Objections [San Francisco Chronicle]

City Council approves massive NYU expansion, residents vow to sue [amNY]

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Two Postscripts: 44-1 Council Vote for NYU 2031

From Alicia D. Hurley on the City Council Vote for Approval on the NYU 2031 Core Plan

Today’s City Council vote in favor of NYU’s 2031 Core plan marks the culmination of over five years of planning, hundreds of hours of meetings with our NYU and external communities, and successive iterations of our plans that were designed to strike a balance between allowing the University to meet its critical academic needs while being sensitive to our surrounding community. The University will now have the ability to plan for growth on its own property in Greenwich Village, complemented by expansion that is taking place in Downtown Brooklyn and near our Health Facilities on Manhattan’s east side. This roadmap for where to plan future facilities will ensure a vibrant and strong University for the decades to come. Read more at

From the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation

We have to share with you the sad news that today the City Council voted 44 to 1 to approve NYU’s massive proposed Village expansion plan. The Council chose to ignore thousands of New Yorkers and by far the majority of NYU faculty, staff, and workers who had called upon them to reject the plan. GVSHP had urged NYU and the Council, the City Planning Commission, and Borough President Stringer to consider win-win alternatives to the current plan by locating new facilities in the Financial District where such development is wanted and needed. Instead, they voted to violate the public trust, turn this neighborhood into a twenty-year construction zone, and further tip the balance of the Village’s neighborhood character to increasing dominance by NYU. Read more at

NYU 2031 = A Net Loss of 2.52 Acres

Sasaki Garden at Washington Square Village (Source: GVSHP)

Read the GVSHP blog post about the reductions in open space if NYU 2031 is approved by City Council.
Although the footprint of the proposed construction on the north superblock has been reduced slightly since, the study identified the loss in open space resulting from NYU’s original proposal — from 6.23 acres currently to 3.71 acres, a net loss of 2.52 acres, in what is the community district with the second lowest ratio of open space per resident in the city.

Monumentalizing of NYU from the Ashes of the Greenwich Village

The title of this post is taken from E. L. Doctorow's editorial published in the N.Y. Daily News on July 25. Here is an excerpt:
This is the familiar story of a corporation versus people. New York University has morphed into a corporation. The people whom it would ride over with its vast, “NYU 2031” expansion plan are not only residents of Greenwich Village, whose open spaces and gardens and historic streets are to be torn up and inundated in dust and debris and left in the shadow of skyscrapers, but the men and women within the university who define its reason for being.
Read more at (Hat tip: Washington Square Village Tenants Association.)

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

A Brief History of NYU Land Battles

A Brief History of NYU Land Battles by Henry Grabar for The Atlantic Cities can be read at Here are some excerpts with emphasis added:
Over the last year, the expansion—perhaps the largest single construction project in Village history, an addition of floor space that nearly amounts to an Empire State Building—has been clearing administrative hurdles, the land use battle shifting in the university’s favor.

Coverage of the City Council Vote Against the Community

Note: the full City Council does not vote until July 25th. Only the full Land Use Committee and the Zoning and Franchises Subcommittee voted today.

Margaret Chin and NYU [Chelsea Now]

NYU 2031 Approved with Modifications [The Nation]

City Council Gives Preliminary Greenlight to New York University Expansion Plan [The Village Voice]

Thank you, Councilmember Charles Barron of Brooklyn

Councilmember Charles Barron of Brooklyn was the only dissenting member of the full City Council Committee on Land Use. Thank you!
Council member Charles Barron slammed NYU and its proposal before entering the lone dissenting vote.

"These are neighborhoods. They are not university towns," he said. "We should send them back to the drawing board and make them respect the wishes of the community."

"We are going to regret this vote," Barron said. [Source: amNY]

NY City Council Votes Against the Community

The NY City Council voted against the community today. The City Council's Subcommittee on Zoning and Franchises unanimously voted in favor of NYU 2031. The full Committee on Land Use vote was split: with 19 members voting in favor, one member opposed, and one member abstaining. (source: Deborah J. Glick)

Monday, July 16, 2012

Green Alternative to NYU 2031

Join GVSHP and NYUFASP on July 17 at a press conference for the Green Alternative to NYU 2031.  The press conference will begin at 8:30 a.m. on the steps of City Hall.  More details are available on the GVSHP website.

TODAY July 16th Phone Zap

Per GVSHP, call City Councilmembers TODAY, July 16th to urge them to vote 'NO' on the NYU plan.  Phone numbers and a script are HERE and printed below.

Your own City Councilmember — search below for contact info or CLICK HERE if you don’t know who your Councilmember's name.

Save Our Historic Lush Life

From a NY Times op-ed by Frank Bruni about the dramatic rise in green space in NYC published on July 14th:
"We're living in an era of re-urbanization," said Catherine Nagel, executive director of the City Parks Alliance, which is sponsoring the [Greater & Greener] conference in New York. And the increased population density means that "we need green space," she said.
Let's hope the New York City Council will vote to preserve the green open space in Greenwich Village!  Bruni's complete editorial is available at

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

City Council Votes on NYU 2031 on July 17 and 25

Dogwood at the WSV Sasaki Garden (photo courtesy Hubert J. Steed, source)
CAAN2031 reports that the City Council will vote on NYU 2031 on July 17th and 25th.  The details are as follows:
July 17 at City Hall Council Chambers: Land Use Committee. The Zoning & Franchises subcommittee is meeting at 9:30, and the Land Use committee meeting starts at 10am. A committee-level vote on NYU 2031 is expected. Public may attend, but this is not a hearing so the public will most likely not be permitted to speak.

Monday, July 9, 2012

Deborah J Glick Speaking Out Against NYU 2031

Watch Assemblymember Deborah J. Glick at the June 29th rally which preceded the City Council Hearing on NYU 2031.

Check out the other videos on the Save the WSV Sasaki Garden channel at Youtube.

The Villager editorial: Chin must reduce NYU 2031 project’s scale

The Villager editorial titled "Chin must reduce N.Y.U. 2031 project’s scale" provided "a six-point road map to help put [the NYu 2031 plan] into balance." The six points relate to the strips, the Zipper Building, the Mercer Boomerang Building, Washington Square Village (WSV), the Bleecker Building, and the 505 Laguardia Place lease.  About the WSV courtyard:
N.Y.U.’s contention that it would create public open space inside of Washington Square Village by building two Boomerang Buildings and creating a university quad strains credibility. The Planning Commission has called for a management and programming oversight committee for the proposed open space. Councilmember Chin needs to give this oversight committee legislative teeth so that it can effectively fulfill its oversight function.
Read the complete article at

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Birds of the NYU Superblocks

From "The Birds in Our Garden: The Potential Impacts of the NYU 2031 Expansion Plan on Birds & Other Wildlife" by biologist Gabriel Willow:

The Birds in Our Garden report was completed with the help of the Save the WSV Sasaki Garden Committee and local volunteers.  The complete report is available online here and is referenced on our Resources page here.