Lobbying Against Downtown Historic District Continues


Building owners in Downtown Brooklyn’s proposed Borough Hall Skyscraper Historic District have opposed the landmark designation on the grounds that it’s going to cost them more money to maintain their buildings, and now the Journal reports that the Real Estate Board of New York has released “an analysis” tallying how much landlords’ expenses are projected to rise. According to REBNY, “property owners will collectively have to pay an additional $4.7 million over about the next five years to comply with landmark regulations.” The REBNY figures come as the City Council prepares to hold a hearing on the designation, which the LPC approved a couple months ago, next week. If the Council doesn’t approve the district, or if it votes to change its borders, it would be the first time a designation wasn’t completely green-lighted in more than 30 years. Preservationists profiled in the article say opposition to the designation is overblown since landlords already have to put extra money into keeping older buildings in decent shape. Meanwhile, LPC spokeswoman Elisabeth de Bourbon notes that designation can stabilize or increase property values, and owners can sometimes apply for tax credits for historic properties.
District Plan Sparks Fight [WSJ]
Battle Still Raging Over Downtown Historic District [Brownstoner]
Skyscraper District Passes in a Unanimous Vote by LPC! [Brownstoner]

What's Happening