Development Near Gowanus Canal Moves Forward After Sandy

Monday, November 26, 2012


The Lightstone Group is moving ahead with plans to build a 700-unit apartment complex near the Gowanus Canal, even though the site flooded during Sandy.

New York City Councilman Brad Lander, who represents the 39th Council District that includes the Gowanus neighborhood, is opposed to the project. He has asked the developer to withdraw its plans.

“It seems to me that it would be a big mistake to move forward with that plan as though nothing had happened, so I hope Lightstone [Group] will withdraw that proposal, will reconsider it,” Lander said.

But Lightstone said in a statement it has no plans to back out.  It said its original plans took into account federal flood prevention standards.

“The project was designed to exceed federal 100-year storm standards by significantly elevating the development above the 100-year floodplain,” the group said in a statement.

The company also says it'll locate the building's mechanical systems above ground, as opposed to in the basement, to protect it from any flooding.

The proposed development on Bond Street was initially proposed by Toll Brothers, which secured rezoning for the project in 2009.  But that developer pulled out after the Gowanus Canal was declared a federal Superfund site.

Councilman Lander said he plans to oppose the project when it comes before the City Planning Commission in a few weeks.


More in:

Comments [2]

zone-b from Brooklyn/Gowanus

Even if the developer did everything to "flood proof" their own site and even offered to cover hotel bills for their residents the next time the city calls for an evaluation of Flood Zone-A, there are still the concerns that their developer's flood proofing measures will create flooding in the existing adjacent community, making existing zone-B houses more flood prone.

In all the planning that lead up to this proposed project, how impacts from heave rain and storm surges will be altered in this region has not been addresses.

Nov. 26 2012 04:53 PM
Lisanne from Brooklyn

So the project will be elevated and the machines underground. That's potentially fine for the residents who might be trapped anyway inside this building should the Gowanus surge again as the streets surrounding the project will be filled with toxic water.

The city needs to seriously reconsider giving this project a go ahead at this time. Look around us! Homelessness, illness and huge financial losses in neighborhoods all over NYC in the aftermath of Sandy. If we had gotten rain it would have been MUCH worse.

If we had gotten rain, the streets around the Gowanus would of been with raw sewage. Why put the new residents in harms way? Eventually the new residents will have to leave their high elevated towers! Will Lightstone be providing boat transportation or would that be the Gowanus Dredgers job?


There will be a community meeting tonite at PS 32 at Hoyt & Union at 6:30 tonite regarding Gowanus Canal Flooding following Sandy.

“This meeting will allow the community to speak directly with EPA about flooding from the Gowanus Canal following Hurricane Sandy. Residents will hear what EPA’s test results found and learn how to keep safe from potential contaminants in water overflows from the storm.”

- Congresswoman Nydia Velázquez

Nov. 26 2012 12:20 PM

Leave a Comment

Email addresses are required but never displayed.

Get the WNYC Morning Brief in your inbox.
We'll send you our top 5 stories every day, plus breaking news and weather.


Latest Newscast




WNYC is supported by the Charles H. Revson Foundation: Because a great city needs an informed and engaged public


Supported by