Thursday, May 27, 2010

CPC leans heavly twoard OK of Vornado building

Yesterdays hearings on the fate of the Hotel Penn loomed even darker as the CPC gave an unofficial nod of approval for the development of the site.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Hotel Penn Demolition Review

Although the CPC hearing is over you can still register your comments before the final decision by the CPC is made. 

Contact the CPC @

Calendar Information Office - Room 2E
22 Reade Street, New York, N.Y. 10007

Or fax to:

Please include the following pieces of information:
• Your name;
• Your address;
• The organization which you represent, and your position, if any;
• Subject and ULURP or CEQR Application #;
• Borough.

Comments will be reviewed until June 7th, 2010

Full details on the EIS is available from:

Tuesday, May 25, 2010



On Wednesday, May 26, 2010, at 10:00 a.m., in Spector Hall, at the Department of City Planning, 22 Reade Street, in Lower Manhattan, a public hearing is being held by the City Planning Commission in conjunction with the above ULURP hearing to receive comments related to the 15 Penn Plaza Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) concerning Amendments to the Zoning Map and the text of the Zoning Resolution (ZR); easement acquisitions; various special permits modifying mandatory District Plan elements as well as height and setback regulations within the Special Midtown District, a floor area bonus in exchange for Subway Station and Rail Mass Transit Facility Improvements, and other related actions, to facilitate the construction of a new commercial office building (known as “15 Penn Plaza”) on the block bounded by Seventh Avenue on the west, Avenue of the Americas on the east, West 33rd Street on the north, and West 32nd and Street on the south (Block 808, Lots 1001 and 1002), located in Manhattan Community District 5.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

MBPO Votes Yes to 15 Penn Plaza redevelopment

Manhattan Borough President Scott M. Stringer Announces Conditional Approval For Proposed Redevelopment Of 15 Penn Plaza
The full document is available for download here.
New York, May 19, 2010 – Manhattan Borough President Scott M. Stringer announced today his conditional approval of proposed zoning changes that would facilitate the redevelopment of the current Hotel Pennsylvania site on Seventh Avenue between West 32nd and West 33rd Streets as a commercial office building and make significant improvements to mass transit.
Borough President Stringer’s favorable recommendation rests on a judgment that the applicant, Vornado, follows through on commitments secured by the Manhattan Borough President’s Office. These conditions for approval relate to:
Increasing access to open space by:
  • Working with the City Planning and Parks and Recreations Departments to determine the appropriate form of mitigation for open space impacts; and
  • Providing accessible open space on the proposed building’s podium to reduce impacts on nearby public open spaces;
Managing traffic by:
  • Implementing the new off-street truck loading plan for the Multi-Tenant Building that will allow trucks to enter and exit head first;
  • Creating a black car management plan for the Single-Tenant Building;
  • Hiring a dock master to coordinate loading and unloading activities; and
  • Updating traffic studies to reflect new traffic initiatives in Midtown;
Reducing pedestrian impacts by:
  • Working with the Department of Transportation to widen crosswalks and other pedestrian elements; and
  • Working with the 34th Street Partnership to relocate any planters which may serve as an obstruction to pedestrian movement;
Mitigating construction by:
  • Implementing path controls to address construction noise issues;
  • Studying additional measures that may be undertaken to reduce noise impacts;
  • Establishing a construction taskforce to address and respond to construction impacts and issues, which meets regularly as required by the phasing and nature of construction and includes representatives from the community board, local council member and other local stakeholders; and
  • Having a single point of contact during construction to resolve any community concerns;
Improving sidewalk conditions by:
  • Working with Community Board 5 and the Parks Department to determine appropriate locations for the 56 street trees that cannot be planted at the perimeter of the development site; and
  • Incorporating street wall design elements to the West 32nd Street fa├žade of the Single-Tenant Building to enliven the pedestrian experience.
Borough President Stringer said, “I’m pleased that the applicant has agreed to mitigate the impacts relating to open space, traffic, pedestrian access, construction, and sidewalk conditions in addition to making the significant, positive mass transit improvements already associated with this development. 15 Penn Plaza lies in one of the few remaining areas of Midtown that offers both major development potential and access to multiple mass transit options, making it an excellent location for high density commercial growth. I look forward to working with the community to address concerns relating to the development and construction of this project.”
The project site consists of the entire city block bounded by West 32nd and West 33rd Streets, and Sixth and Seventh Avenues.  The proposed office building would be constructed at the western end of the project site where the Hotel Pennsylvania currently stands.  The remainder of the project site is occupied by the Manhattan Mall, a 14-story office and retail building.  Vornado plans to merge the development site and the Manhattan Mall site into a single zoning lot.
The two proposed development scenarios – a Single-Tenant Building and a Multi-Tenant Building – incorporate the maintenance of the Manhattan Mall and demolition of Hotel Pennsylvania.  Either of the proposed office buildings will have, at minimum, a LEED Silver rating.  The applicant proposes the same mass transit improvements for each development scenario. 
Borough President Stringer made his advisory recommendation on the project as part of his Charter role in the city’s Uniform Land Use Review Procedure (ULURP). The proposed project must also be approved by the City Planning Commission, which will hold its hearing on Wednesday, May 26, 2010, at its offices at 22 Reade Street. The project must also be approved by the City Council.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

15 Penn Plaza

The City council are a bunch of narrow minded money hungry SOB's.  They only give a shit about what they think is best for them and not what the community thinks.  I brought up the finical instability of Vornado, and the "Hole in the Ground" that is Filenes basement in Boston, and the almost $500 million in loans that Vornado has defaulted on in the past few months.  Doesn't matter to them, they are only interested in rolling the HP into the Moynihan station and west side development projects with MSG and getting paid off on it.  Never mind that it will take 4 1/2 years to build (if they build at all) and all the environmental hazards that a project of this size comes with (noise and air pollution and ground transportation) nope, none of that matters to them, if they feel the FAR is worth the opening of the Gimbels passageway then so be it they will get the approval to build.

Bottom line this project is going to get approved one way or another.  So with that I say thanks to all who DIDN'T SHOW UP to help.

Monday, May 3, 2010

A letter to Brian Footer requesting a meeting with Ms. Quinn

I sent a letter to Mr Footer requesting a meeting with Ms. Quinn, lets see what happens now.  In the mean time I suggest that anyone wanting to go, contact me and let me know what their schedule is going to be like before we book it so we can organize as many people as possible.

Mr. Footer,

I was directed to you to request a face to face meeting with Council Woman Quinn and my colleges, in regards to the 15 Penn Plaza Project.  If possible please contact me at either this email or the phone number below to discuss a time.  Thank you.

Gregory Jones
Save The Hotel Pennsylvania Foundation

New York, NY 10001