Ilya Marritz covers business for WNYC.
Cuomo Approves Sale of Air Rights to Benefit Park
Thursday, November 14, 2013
Governor Cuomo has approved a rescue plan for the financially-troubled Hudson River Park, which stretches along Manhattan's West Side. Among other things, the new law allows the transfer of air rights to property developers who want to build higher buildings within one block of the park than are currently allowed.
Many environmentalists are disappointed.
Bunny Gabel, with Friends of the Earth New York, said Sandy flooded basements and caused blackouts and she worries that, with more severe storms predicted as the climate changes, higher buildings might make for a bigger disaster.
“It's lunacy to be building in that area where so much devastation has already occurred,” Gabel said.
Backers of the law say the park faces more than $100 million dollars worth of necessary and urgent repairs, and selling air rights is the best way to raise the cash.
Hudson River Park was founded in 1998 and is run as a public benefit corporation.