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ENB - Region 2 Notices 4/19/2017

Negative Declaration

New York County (Manhattan) - The New York City Department of City Planning, as lead agency, has determined that the proposed Manhattan West - Public Access Area Text Amendment will not have a significant adverse environmental impact. The action involves a proposal by the applicants, BOP NW LLC, BOP SE LLC, BOP NE LLC, and BOP MW Residential Market LLC, affiliates of Brookfield Office Properties, for a Zoning Text Amendment to ZR Sections 93-73, 93-731, and 93-721(a)(2) concerning Public Access Areas (PAAs) required in connection with the development of the Ninth Avenue Rail Yard, also known as the Manhattan West development (Project Site). The proposed action would facilitate a proposal by the applicant to construct the PAA's required for Phase III and Phase IV of the Manhattan West development located on the block bounded by Ninth Avenue, West 31st Street, Dyer Avenue, and West 33rd Street. The portion of the Project Site included in Phase III and Phase IV of Manhattan West is generally comprised of the Ninth Avenue Rail Yard PAAs (including the Entry Plaza, the Central Plaza, the Dyer Avenue Platform, and the Art Plaza.) The project site is located in a C6-4 district in Subarea B2 of the Special Hudson Yards District, in Manhattan Community District 4, New York.

The proposed text amendment would revise existing regulations and modify the design requirements and restrictions applicable to PAAs on the Ninth Avenue Rail Yard and 450 West 33rd Street, an adjacent zoning lot to the Project Site with a commercial building and ground floor retail. The construction of Manhattan West is to be completed in four phases, defined geographically and located contiguous to one another. Phases I and II, generally located in the Southwest and Northeast, respectively, of the project site, are both concurrently under construction. Phase III of the development is located in the Northwest area, while Phase IV of the development is located in the Southeast area of the Project Site. Phase III includes the construction of the Dyer Avenue Platform, the Northwest Building (at the intersection of West 33rd Street and the Dyer Avenue Platform), the Northwest Retail Podium and Southwest Retail Podium (along the northern and southern boundaries of Central Plaza), and the western portion of the Central Plaza. Following the subject action, only Phase IV of the project remains to be constructed, the Southeast building and the Art Plaza.

In addition to the proposed text amendment, the applicant is also seeking two Chairperson Certifications, affecting only Phase III of the Manhattan West project, necessary to facilitate the continued phased development of the Manhattan West project: (1) Certification for Public Access Areas on the Ninth Avenue Rail Yard (ZR 93-732), and (2) Certification for residential use in Subdistricts A, B, and E (ZR 93-122(b). The two Chairperson Certifications are ministerial actions that are not subject to environmental review.

The Project Site was included in the Hudson Yards Rezoning and analyzed in the No. 7 Subway Extension - Hudson Yards Rezoning and Development Program Final Generic Environmental Impact Statement (Final GEIS) (2005). A 2014 Text Amendment to the Final GEIS included modifications to the PAA requirements originally applicable to the Ninth Avenue Rail Yard and would be applicable to the Manhattan West development absent the proposed action. Currently, the Manhattan West project is under development. Phases I and II are under construction and consist of the Southwest Tower (at the intersection of West 31st Street and Dyer Avenue) and the Northeast Tower (at the intersection of West 33rd Street and Ninth Avenue). The West 31st Street Connector (a stairway and elevator connecting West 31st Street to the Dyer Avenue Platform) and Entry Plaza are also being construction in connection with Phases I and II.

In designing Phase III of the Manhattan West development, the applicants expressed concerns regarding the design provisions in the 2014 Text Amendment. The proposed text amendment would modify the 2014 Text Amendment design requirements applicable to the Ninth Avenue Rail Yard PAA. In particular, the Event Space within the Central Plaza would be permitted to host a wider variety of events throughout the year, there would be less signage surrounding the Ninth Avenue Rail Yard PAAs, and the buildings fronting the Central Plaza would be spaced further apart from one another than what is now permitted. With the proposed modifications, entry signs would be provided at specified primary access points to the Ninth Avenue Rail public access areas. The Event Space would be used to hold events that are open to the public and generally free of admission charge. The amendment would allow for temporary stages, structures, and seating in conjunction with such events to extend beyond the boundary of the Event Space, provided that the extension area does not exceed 2,000 square feet and is located beyond 295 feet west of Ninth Avenue. The Event Space will be permitted to host seasonal events: concerts and performances open to the general public during the summer (between April 1st and November 15th) and an ice skating rink, open to the public but a fee may be charged, during the winter (between November 15th and April 1st). The current text amendment allows for the Event Space to be closed to the public for up to 12 private events per year in accordance with the terms set forth in a Restrictive Declaration acceptable to the New York City Planning Commission (NYCPC) Chairperson, but the proposed action would move this existing text to section 93-73(b)(2)(iii). The proposed text amendment would also require that no temporary structure or seating associated with an event shall obstruct the required circulation path around the Central Plaza. Finally, the proposed amendment would expand the boundary within which the Central Plaza is located and allow a building cantilever, extending no greater than 10 feet, to be located over the Central Plaza (within 115 feet west of Ninth Avenue). This would facilitate the design of the Southeast Tower and maintain the required minimum distance between the circulation paths and facades of buildings facing the Central Plaza.

Absent the proposed action, the applicant will develop the Ninth Avenue Rail Yard PAAs for the Manhattan West development in accordance with the design requirements set forth in the 2014 Text Amendment. Without the currently proposed text amendment, entry signs are required every 40 feet along the entire border of the public access area. The Central Plaza will contain a total of 42,957 square feet of space, including a 4,500 square foot Event Space that would be used for permitted public events, however, no seasonal performance stage or ice skating will be permitted to exceed the boundaries of the Event Space. The design of the buildings fronting upon the Central Plaza would be constricted by the required location of the two 12-foot pedestrian circulation paths that must be located within the boundary of the Central Plaza and within 20-feet of such buildings.

The analysis year for the proposed action, including Phase III and Phase IV, is 2023.

Contact: Robert Dobruskin, New York City Department of City Planning, 120 Broadway, 31st Floor, New York, NY 10271, Phone: (212) 720-3423, E-mail: rdobrus@planning.nyc.gov.


Positive Declaration and Public Scoping (Correction)

Kings County (Brooklyn) - The New York City Department of Environmental Protection (NYC DEP), as lead agency, has determined that the proposed Gowanus Canal Combined Sewer Overflow (CSO) Facilities Project may have a significant adverse impact on the environment and a Draft Environmental Impact Statement must be prepared. A public scoping session will be held on May 4, 2017 at 7:00 p.m. at the Public School (PS) 32, 317 Hoyt Street, Brooklyn, NY 11231.

NYC DEP is undertaking a project to design and construct two combined sewer overflow (CSO) facilities to reduce the volume of combined sewer overflows entering the Gowanus Canal (the Canal). This Project is part of the federally required remediation of the Canal under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act of 1980 (CERCLA or Superfund), and will be reviewed in accordance with the New York State Environmental Quality Review Act (SEQRA), City Environmental Quality Review (CEQR), and the Uniform Land Use Review Procedure (ULURP).

The project is located at: the Head End Facility, 242 Nevins Street, 234 Butler Street and 270 Nevins Street in Gowanus Brooklyn, New York and, at the Owls Head Facility, 2 2nd Avenue, 110 5th Street, 122 5th Street, 22 2nd Avenue and the bed of 5th Street in Brooklyn, New York

Contact: Rasheed Lucas, NYC DEP, 59-17 Junction Boulevard, Flushing, NY 11373, Phone: (718) 595-6959, E-mail: rlucas@dep.nyc.gov.


Notice of Acceptance of Draft EIS and Public Hearing

New York County (Manhattan) - The New York City Planning Commission, as lead agency, has accepted a Draft Environmental Impact Statement on the proposed Greater East Midtown Rezoning. A public hearing on the Draft EIS will be held on April 26, 2017 at 10:00 a.m. at the New York City Department of City Planning, Spector Hall, 22 Reade Street, New York, NY 10007. Written comments on the Draft EIS will be accepted until May 8, 2017. The Draft EIS is available from the New York City Department of City Planning, Environmental Assessment and Review Division, 120 Broadway, 31st Floor, New York, NY, 10271-3100 and on line at: http://www1.nyc.gov/site/planning/applicants/eis-documents.page .

The action involves a proposal by New York City Department of City Planning (NYC DCP) for a zoning text and zoning map amendments (Proposed Action) within the East Midtown neighborhood of Manhattan, New York. The Proposed Action is intended to reinforce the area's standing as a premiere Central Business District, support the preservation of landmarked buildings, and provide for public realm improvements.

The Proposed Action includes a zoning text amendment to establish the East Midtown Subdistrict within an approximately 78-block area of the Special Midtown District. The rezoning area is generally bounded by East 57th Street to the north, East 39th Street to the south, a line generally between 150 and 200 feet easterly of Third Avenue and a line 250 feet westerly of Madison Avenue. The proposed Subdistrict would supersede the existing Grand Central Subdistrict, and would allow for increased floor area ratios (FARs) between 18.0 and 27.0. The text amendment would also create four new special permits and one new authorization within the Subdistrict. Under the proposed rezoning, an existing C5-2 district (bounded by East 43rd Street to the north, East 42nd Street to the south, Second Avenue to the east, and a line 200 feet easterly of Third Avenue to the west) would be replaced by a C5-3 district, and would be included in the proposed East Midtown Subdistrict. The Special Midtown District would be extended to encompass the proposed C5-3 district. The analysis year for the environmental review is 2036.

Contact: Robert Dobruskin, New York City Department of City Planning, 120 Broadway, 30th Floor, New York, NY 10271, Phone: (212) 720-3321, E-mail: rdobrus@planning.nyc.gov.


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