Rendering via NYCEDC
The New York City Council voted Wednesday to approve plans to build a new tech hub on city-owned land at 124 East 14th Street near Union Square. As Crain’s reported, last Thursday the building received the go-ahead from the zoning subcommittee that was reviewing the development of the 21-story building that supporters expect will be a resource for the “tech-for-good” community and provide jobs for lower-income workers. The project is being developed jointly by the city’s Economic Development Corp. and developer RAL Development Service; it is expected to open in 2020. The proposed tech center, which the mayor hopes will nurture budding entrepreneurs in the technology field and bring over 600 jobs to New Yorkers, is planned at the site of a P.C. Richard & Son store, in an area already filled with new developments with more on the way.
Not everyone is excited, however
Rendering via NYCEDC
In what may be shaping up to be one of New York City’s biggest preservation battles of the coming year, Mayor Bill de Blasio’s application Monday for a rezoning in order to move forward with a proposed tech hub at 124 East 14th Street in Union Square led neighborhood preservation and affordable housing groups to escalate cries of protest. Community organizations, including the Cooper Square Committee and the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation (GVSHP), restated the urgent need for assurance that rezoning would come with protections for the adjacent residential neighborhood. Preservationists fear the creation of a new “Silicon Alley” near Union Square will bring rent hikes and more condo and office towers. The proposed tech center, which the mayor hopes will nurture budding entrepreneurs in the technology field and bring over 600 jobs to New Yorkers, is planned at the site of a P.C. Richard & Son store, in an area already filled with new developments with more on the way.
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An “oversized Silicon Alley” is what some are calling Mayor de Blasio’s plan to transform Union Square and its southern stretches into the city’s next tech hub. The main component so far is the massive Union Square Tech Hub proposed to replace the P.C. Richard & Son building on East 14th Street, but Councilwoman Rosie Mendez and the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation are advocating that, in exchange for the building, the city rezone the surrounding blocks to prevent an influx of out-of-scale development. Despite their oppositions, CetraRuddy has revealed on their site two environmentally friendly proposals for the site at 799 Broadway, the former home of the St. Denis Hotel at the southwest corner of East 11th Street. Spotted by CityRealty, the 240-foot, 17-story office building would be the first catering to the Mayor’s tech dreams, though the renderings are merely conceptual at this point.
All the renderings and details ahead