City Council Considers Dock Street Project
May 26th, 2009, 10:50 am
MAS testified last week before the Zoning and Franchises Subcommittee of City Council in opposition to the Dock Street project in DUMBO. The proposed 18-story building would be located directly adjacent to the Brooklyn Bridge, and, if approved, will alter views of the Bridge from DUMBO’s streets and block views of the East River, Manhattan Bridge, and Williamsburg Bridge from the Brooklyn Bridge’s public walkway. The Brooklyn Bridge is an indisputable icon of New York City, and protecting it from encroaching large-scale development is of utmost importance to MAS. No ordinary historic structure, the Brooklyn Bridge has been afforded the highest level of recognition and protection in the United States, National Historic Landmark status. MAS therefore asked the Council Members to reject the zoning changes which would allow this development. The City Council heard from several speakers on both sides of the issue at today’s hearing. The National Trust for Historic Preservation (which listed Brooklyn’s Industrial Waterfront on its 11 Most Endangered Historic Places list in 2007), the Historic Districts Council, the Brooklyn Heights Association, and the DUMBO Neighborhood Association all spoke in opposition to the project. Documentary filmmaker Ken Burns attended the hearing to voice his opposition, but unfortunately had to leave before being called to speak (reportedly he had to leave to shoot his upcoming continuation of his baseball film). Historian David McCullough has also been extremely vocal in his opposition to this project, leading a rally on the steps of City Hall last month. Although several Council Members, including Council Members David Yassky (who represents the DUMBO neighborhood), Bill DeBlasio, and Tony Avella, stated that they opposed the project, it is uncertain whether the project can be defeated at the Council. Contact your local City Council Member to voice your opposition to the project. Read MAS’ statement in full.