Stephen Levin at a City Council hearing last week. (Christopher DiScipio)

Stephen Levin at a City Council hearing last week. (Christopher DiScipio)

After a hearing that drew at least one celeb protester, the City Council has approved land use actions for several sections of the impending Greenpoint Landing development. The affected sites include a lot that has been donated by the developers for use as a pre-K-to-8th-grade public school. Greenpoint Landing Associates (GLA), the developers of the site, made several large modifications to their plan before the council approved it yesterday, due largely to negotiations with Greenpoint’s star Council member Stephen Levin.

The changes include:

  • An additional $3 million in funding for Newtown Barge Park donated by the GLA (which brings the total park budget to $10 million)
  • An agreement from the GLA to keep their 431 affordable housing units permanently affordable (between 40 and 120 percent of the area median income)
  • An agreement from the City to create a comprehensive transportation plan for Community Board 1, including a GLA-funded free shuttle bus from Greenpoint Landing to the 7 train at Court Square and the G at India Street
  • A $25,000 annual donation from the GLA to the future school on the site
  • A comprehensive safety examination of the entire site by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation before any ground is broken on the school.

Community organizations GWAPP and NAG both announced (a little begrudgingly) that they are in favor of the land use approvals with these modifications, and Levin considers the decisions to be positive ones for the neighborhood.

“The 2005 rezoning of Greenpoint-Williamsburg promised open space, affordable housing, and other mitigations that would offset the high-rise residential development,” he said in a statement. “Luxury housing has been built, but until today, many of these commitments have gone unfulfilled. Now, after negotiations with GLA and the City, we have a clear plan and real commitments in place that will benefit our community long into the future.”

No section of nearby development 77 Commercial Street was included in the vote, and only a small portion of the entire Greenpoint Landing development was affected (the concessions don’t address many of the requests made by Community Board 1 back in August). But GLA can move forward with the development based on the approvals it has in hand.