U.S. Attorney and Manhattan DA Probing Library Deal

The Real Deal reports that U.S. Attorney Preet Brahrara and Manhattan D.A. Cyrus Vance Jr. are looking into the deal under which the Brooklyn Heights Branch of the Brooklyn Public Library (photo) was sold to developer Hudson Companies for demolition and redevelopment as a high rise mixed use residential and commercial building with a new branch library on part of its ground floor and below grade level. The deal also committed Hudson to building two affordable housing buildings off site, but within the district of Community Board 2. The deal appeared to be final as of the beginning of March, when the Brooklyn Borough Board, the last governmental entity that needed to approve it, said “yes.”

The two Manhattan based prosecutors are said to be examining the deal because it is one of several in which it has been alleged that developers who had contributed to Mayor Bill de Blasio’s “One New York Fund”. Hudson’s head, Heights resident David Kramer, was a fundraiser for de Blasio. It’s said that other developers, including Toll Brothers, developers of Pierhouse, had made higher bids. The City responded that the Hudson proposal offered superior interior accommodations for the new branch library, a better interim library facility for use during construction, a quicker construction schedule, and more affordable housing. According to the Real Deal story, Bharara and Vance have issued subpoenas to several developers who bid on the project, but that none has yet been issued to Kramer.

Share this Story:

, , , , , , , , ,


    Great news, but with library to close by end of June may be
    too little too late.
    takes all parties to court on June 10th.
    If you care, be there and check out the website.

  • Mary

    It’s good that it is finally under such scrutiny. But is it for the right question? I can understand why the highest bid might not offer the best deal. What I can’t understand, and never will, is selling off public land. The 80/20 rule has morphed into a loophole for politicos and developers.