Over three years ago, we noted that the proposal by landlord Pinnacle Group to build a parking garage in the courtyard between the A.T. White Riverside Apartments and the BQE, which would entail destruction of a grove of mature trees (see photo) as well as disruption of tenants’ lives, was “proving harder to kill than Rasputin.” Just over a year ago, the New York State Division of Housing and Community Renewal denied Pinnacle’s request to re-open its previously denied application for permission to construct the garage. Earlier this year, a court upheld the DHCR’s decision. Now, it seems, Pinnacle’s ba-a-a-ack.
Ben Bankson, President of the Willowtown Association, has received a message from Bill Ringler, President of the Riverside Tenants’ Association, reporting that Pinnacle’s attorney, Ken Fisher, has persuaded the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission to allow a modification to the permit for the garage which would relocate the entrance to the garage, and that the modification was allowed without any public hearing (though Pinnacle asserts that ther was one), and Pinnacle is now reapplying to the DHCR, seeking a third bite at the apple. The Riverside tenants have until Wednesday, October 26 (two weeks from yesterday) to respond to Pinnacle’s petition to the DHCR, and they are considering how to proceed and exploring options as to legal representation.
Bankson contacted Judy Stanton, Executive director of the Brooklyn Heights Association, who said she was not notified of the application to the LPC for modification of the permit. She is looking into the matter further.
Update: I’ve amended the text above, based on Bill Ringler’s comment below.