FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 8, 2006
Rachaele Raynoff, Press Secretary (City Planning) -- (212) 720-3471
Janel Patterson (EDC) -- (212) 312-3523
STAPLETON PLAN BEGINS PUBLIC REVIEW AS CITY MOVES FORWARD WITH PLANS FOR MAJOR REDEVELOPMENT OF FORMER NAVY HOMEPORT ON STATEN ISLAND
City to Invest $66 Million in Infrastructure Improvements
May 8, 2006 – The Department of City Planning (DCP) officially began the public review of the City's proposed redevelopment plan for the Stapleton Waterfront and the former Navy Homeport on Staten Island which will include housing, retail, a sports complex, farmers market and complementary uses linked by a new mile-long waterfront esplanade, announced City Planning Director Amanda M. Burden and Andrew Alper, President of the New York City Economic Development Corporation. The development plan is consistent with the Bloomberg Administration's commitment to reclaim the waterfront and create economic opportunity in all five boroughs, and will provide the local community with unfettered access to the New York Harbor waterfront for the first time since the Homeport's establishment in 1990. The plan fulfills goals identified in 2004 by the Mayor's Homeport Redevelopment Task Force. Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg has budgeted $66 million for construction of the esplanade and other infrastructure improvements. The land use actions needed to implement the Task Force's plan include the creation of a new special district - the Special Stapleton Waterfront District; changes to the zoning in the area; mapping a new street system; and disposition of city-owned property which would facilitate new desired development.
City Planning Director Burden said, "Today marks an important milestone on the way to transforming the Stapleton waterfront. These proposals will allow the community to enjoy once again its greatest natural resource - the New York Harbor. The Stapleton community has been a part of the planning process from the beginning, including many working meetings with the Mayor's Task Force where the plan was developed. The Department's borough planners and urban design staff worked closely with the Economic Development Corporation to develop the detailed regulatory changes needed to implement the plan. The proposals will promote a vibrant streetscape that is urban yet welcoming - that retains its historic connections but injects a fresh energy into Stapleton. We look forward to continued public input into the process."
EDC President Alper said, "These proposals take us one step closer to making the Task Force's plan a reality. Redeveloping the Stapleton waterfront has always been a collaborative effort among the City, the elected officials and the community, and these proposals reflect that. The proposals are sensitive to the town center of Stapleton and ensure that new development will keep the character and scale of upland Stapleton and reinforce connections between the town center and the waterfront. After the public review process, EDC will issue RFPs to redevelop the Homeport according to the Task Force's plan. Soon the City and the community will have a valuable new asset – the Stapleton waterfront."
"On behalf of the Staten Island community, I want to express my thanks to Mayor Bloomberg, City Planning Director Burden, and EDC President Alper. We are pleased that the Homeport Task Force's plan continues to move ahead, and we look forward to the day when the waterfront is once again an active part of the Stapleton community," said Borough President James P. Molinaro.
"As we begin public review of the Stapleton plan, the forecast for this area is getting brighter every day. The city's and the Task Force's efforts to engage the community have been apparent throughout this planning process and have made for a much better and more promising redevelopment for the Homeport that will enhance the entire Stapleton area and all of Staten Island," said Councilman Michael McMahon.
The special district and zoning and map changes would:
- Create 12 acres of new public open space along the New York Harbor with sweeping views of the Manhattan skyline and Verrazano Narrows Bridge
- Extend the Stapleton town center to what is now an underused industrial area
- Promote a vibrant street life and match new development to the traditional Stapleton town center by requiring low-scale buildings, allowing ground-floor retail, and limiting parking to rear of buildings
- Develop infrastructure including roads and open space that will attract commercial and residential investment in a lively mixed-use community
- Create capacity for approximately 350 units of housing on several publicly owned sites in buildings of no more than 50 feet in height and create the potential for additional housing development on adjacent private land.
- Preserve and enhance views of the water from upland Stapleton
- Attract a major job-generating economic use to the area
- Provide ample on-street parking for the public and sufficient off-street parking to meet the needs of the new developments
- Improve Front Street, a much-needed travel connection that parallels the waterfront between St. George and points south
- Enable construction of a planned farmers market to serve the new residential community and adjacent neighborhoods
- Provide for passive and recreational activities on the waterfront such as garden areas and walkways, fishing, volleyball, bicycling, and kayaking
A consultant team led by engineers Weidlinger Associates and landscape architects/planners Wallace, Roberts & Todd is designing the public improvements including the new esplanade, open spaces, roadways, streetscapes and other elements. EDC will oversee construction of the streets and preparation of the site for development, including razing the Navy buildings and construction of the public open spaces and esplanade. EDC will issue RFPs for the development parcels in late 2006. Preparation of the site and construction of the esplanade and streets are expected to begin in 2006-07.
A $1 million renovation by the Department of Parks & Recreation of Tappen Park, in the core of the Stapleton town center, is already underway. In addition, as part of the City's multi-faceted approach to the revitalization of Stapleton, the Department of Small Business Services provides ongoing core support to The Downtown Staten Island Council to revitalize retail in the area, provide a marketing strategy for the community, and support amenities such as business facade improvements, sidewalk upgrades, and street trees.
The Department of City Planning certified the application on May 8, 2006, initiating the formal public review process. The proposal has been referred to Community Board 1, which has 60 days to hold a public hearing and submit its recommendation to the City Planning Commission. The Borough President will then have 30 days to submit his recommendation, after which the City Planning Commission will have 60 days to hold a public hearing and vote on the plan. After receiving the Commission's report, the City Council must act within 50 days.
Copies of the environmental review documents are available for download at the New York City Office of Environmental Coordination (http://www.nyc.gov/html/oec/html/home/home.shtml),or NYC Economic Development Corporation (http://www.nycedc.com) For details on the proposed plan or the public land use review process (ULURP) please see the Department of City Planning's web site at www.nyc.gov/planning.
About City Planning
The Department of City Planning is responsible for the City's physical and socioeconomic planning, including land use and environmental review; preparation of plans and policies; and provision of technical assistance and planning information to government agencies, public officials, and community boards.
New York City Economic Development Corporation is the City's primary vehicle for promoting economic growth in each of the five boroughs. EDC's mission is to stimulate growth through expansion and redevelopment programs that encourage investment, generate prosperity and strengthen the City's competitive position. EDC serves as an advocate to the business community by building relationships with companies that allow them to take advantage of New York City's many opportunities.
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