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NY Developers Win City Council Approval for Future Projects Over NIMBY Objections

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By: Jared Evan

The New York Post reports, “the tide is turning against NIMBY-ism,” Two Trees managing director for external affairs David Lombino said of the phenomenon. He predicted, “You’ll see more of it under [incoming mayor] Eric Adams”. The proof of this is the recent approval of a major new development in Brooklyn. According to Steve Cuozzo, “the centerpiece of the 3.5-acre Williamsburg site called River Ring, is a pair of sloping apartment towers rising to 710 and 560 feet designed by BIG, the architectural firmheaded by Bjarke Ingels. Some 263 of a total 1,050 units will be “permanently affordable” and have the same design and amenities as market-rate units”. The need for thousands of additional housing units in a desirable Brooklyn neighborhood and the promise that there will be low environmental-impact has meant that there was very little in the way of opposition to the plans.

As reported by The Real Deal, BIG and Two Trees’ River Ring project has officially received City approval to move forward into development. The milestone wraps up a breakneck land use review whereby the teams steered the project through the community board, borough president, City Planning Commission and City Council in just four months, which is “about as fast as it has ever been done.”

“With the River Ring we close one of the last remaining gaps in the continuous transformation of the Williamsburg waterfront into a post-industrial urban park scape. Rather than stopping at the hard edge of the old dock, Metropolitan avenue is split into a pedestrian loop extending all the way into the river, connecting the dots of the concrete caissons to form an urban archipelago of recreative islands while protecting a beach with tidal pools and wetlands,” said Bjarke Ingels, Founding Partner & Creative Director. “The radical transformation of Copenhagen’s port into a swimmable extension of the public space that we helped pioneer two decades ago, now seems to be knocking at the door in Williamsburg and the entire East River. The River Ring will be the first of many invitations for New Yorkers to dip their toes in the water.

According to website of the architect/designer, Bjarke Intel, “as reported by The Real Deal, BIG and Two Trees’ River Ring project has officially received City approval to move forward into development. The milestone wraps up a breakneck land use review whereby the teams steered the project through the community board, borough president, City Planning Commission and City Council in just four months, which is “about as fast as it has ever been done.”

“With the River Ring we close one of the last remaining gaps in the continuous transformation of the Williamsburg waterfront into a post-industrial urban park scape. Rather than stopping at the hard edge of the old dock, Metropolitan Avenue is split into a pedestrian loop extending all the way into the river, connecting the dots of the concrete caissons to form an urban archipelago of recreative islands while protecting a beach with tidal pools and wetlands,” said Bjarke Ingels, Founding Partner & Creative Director. “The radical transformation of Copenhagen’s port into a swimmable extension of the public space that we helped pioneer two decades ago, now seems to be knocking at the door in Williamsburg and the entire East River. The River Ring will be the first of many invitations for New Yorkers to dip their toes in the water.”

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