Reminder And Time Change For TONIGHT’s SOS Meeting

Please join us TONIGHT (December 18th) for a short meeting of Save Our Seaport, 7:00 PM in the library at St. Margaret’s House, 49 Fulton Street.

This will be a chance for us all to compare notes and to take stock of where we stand. We will also be discussing the next steps to take moving forward.

Please note the new start time. We received emails from members who planned to speak at the public session at tonight’s CB1 Monthly Meeting, which takes place at 6pm at Gibney Dance, 280 Broadway (entrance at 53A Chambers), and we did not want to conflict.

Please do go speak your mind, and then join us at 7:00!

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Monday CB1 Meeting, Thursday SOS Meeting


South Street Seaport Museum’s Interim President Jonathan Boulware will be giving an update on the state of the Museum to Manhattan’s Community Board 1, Seaport/Civic Center Committee, Monday, December 15, at 6 PM, in the Board’s office at 49-51 Chambers Street, room 709. The City Club of New York is also on the schedule together with a presentation of its short film “South Street Seaport: Visions for a New Future.”

This is not expected to be a large meeting. Given the recently declared intentions of Howard Hughes Corporation, it will certainly be interesting.

Please allow time for security procedures at the building entrance.


Please join us for a short meeting of Save Our Seaport this Thursday, December 18, 6:30 PM in the library at St. Margaret’s House, 49 Fulton Street.

This will be a chance for us all to compare notes and to take stock of where we stand. We will also be discussing the next steps to take moving forward.


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Save Our Seaport: A Critical Moment to Stand Up and Be Counted!

Community Board 1 Landmarks Committee, Public Hearing
Wednesday December 10, 6:00 P.M.
At St. Paul’s Chapel, 209 Broadway (Broadway & Fulton)

♦ The Howard Hughes Seaport Tower…how many times do we have to say “Wrong” before we’re heard?

♦ The South Street Seaport Museum…is not vacant, is not closed, and is not dead. How and why is the Howard Hughes Corporation seeking to remove it from Schermerhorn Row?

♦ A marina…did anyone ask for that? Or is this questionable offering part of a waterfront land grab? (East River waters are treacherous for amateur yachtsmen and small boat owners.)

♦ How much money will this developer spend to generate the false appearance of public support?

♦ When will the developer tell us what new surprises its plan holds for New York’s South Street Seaport Historic District? When are we told what will be left of the District when the developer is done?

Please don’t let the public’s interest, and your voice, be drowned out. Let’s show up Wednesday, determined to get answers!


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Alert for Wednesday December 10th

Community Board #1 Landmarks Committee
Wednesday, December 10, 2014
St. Paul’s Chapel (Fulton Street and Broadway)
6pm to 9pm

“South Street Seaport, application by Howard Hughes Corporation for South Street Seaport, application for alterations to Tin Building, Schermerhorn Row, Pier 17 and East River Esplanade, demolition of the Link Building, construction of pavilions under FDR Drive and new building on Pier – Presentation and possible resolution”

Make your voice and those of your neighbors heard at the Community Board #1 Landmarks Public Hearing, a critical moment to SAVE OUR SEAPORT!

The developer Howard Hughes Corporation (HHC) is spending millions of dollars on a public relations campaign that spins a false story that a Seaport Tower is the “price that we must pay” to save the museum, build a middle school, etc. Yet HHC has a “sweetheart deal” that pays less than $3.50 per square foot (“psf”) in rent to the City while then charging its retail tenants hundreds of dollars psf more. This should be more than sufficient to fund HHC’s corporate social responsibility to give something back to the community.

HHC went before the Landmarks Preservation Commission in 2013 with Pier 17 plans to add exterior glass. Everyone was caught by surprise when they demolished (instead of rehabilitating) the pier and its structural elements. Now HHC seeks to demolish additional buildings and put up a canopy roof for a special events concert facility that is mostly closed to the public but will bring more noise and late night traffic to its neighbors.

By “segmenting” their applications, they have successfully avoided a public review of what Pier 17 and their design for the Seaport will ultimately be. Their plan for relocating an historic (TIN) building is a terrible precedent, as would be replacing the New Amsterdam Market with five glass boxes under the FDR Drive. Adding a service road that crosses a bikeway and destroys the New Market Building makes a 42-Story Seaport Tower possible along the waterfront.

HHC is looking to downsize the South Street Seaport Museum fleet by reducing piers available to historic ships, and by evicting its maritime collection in Schermerhorn Row for affordable apartments (as the price to pay for the Mayor’s support for a Seaport Tower).

They have not yet made any such deal with the South Street Seaport Museum and HHC should not be allowed to assume such a deal until the Museum retains all of the useful and historic uplands space that it needs to house and display its maritime collection, to expand its educational mission, and the Museum retains sufficient waterfront to berth visiting ships in addition to its current fleet.

Similarly, the Department of Education has NOT approved a zoned Middle School of any size in a Seaport Tower, the State of New York has not approved HHC replacement of piers and platform, and the Landmarks Commission turned down a previous attempt to move the TIN Building.

Wednesday we will need to stand up and be counted in favor of the South Street Seaport Museum, the Waterfront, the Market, and the integrity of the Seaport Historic District. We need to show New York that we do not accept these last years of half-truths and evasions. Together, Wednesday night, we will be part of the public opposition that Howard Hughes Corporation meets as it tries to advance its plans.


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MAKE YOUR VOICE HEARD at Wednesday’s CB1 Meeting

This Wednesday’s Community Board 1 meeting is critical, and we need to pack the room to capacity!

More details will follow soon, but in the meantime, please download this flyer and distribute it to your friends and neighbors.

And do plan to attend: Wednesday December 10th, St. Paul’s Church (Fulton Street and Broadway), 6pm to 9pm.


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Latest Press following the December 1st “Forum”

♦ DowntownPostNYC: Howard Hughes Execs Present Seaport Development Plans At Public Forum Sponsored By ‘Friends Of The Seaport’

David Weinreb, CEO of The Howard Hughes Corporation.

Downtown Express: News Analysis: Elbows Sharpen In Seaport Tower Fight

Images courtesy of Howard Hughes Corp. Rendering of the proposed tower. The dotted line indicates a building that would be permitted under the current zoning.

Downtown Express: Letters To The Editor

Crains New York: EDC chief: Seaport alternative is ‘red herring’

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SOS Letter Writing Campaign

We all have a stake in the future of the South Street Seaport, and we all have the right to our say about it.

Do we want NYC to cede the Seaport to developer Howard Hughes Corporation? NO

Do we want the vista of New York’s Brooklyn Bridge and the Seaport’s tall ships forever dominated by a new hotel/condo tower? NO

Does New York’s mayor know where you stand? He needs to hear from you! So does City Council Member Margaret Chin, and Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer.

Do we want our history kept alive in the unique Seaport Historic District? YES

Do we want this unique living New York neighborhood to thrive? YES

Do we want to keep hold of our maritime heritage at the South Street Seaport Museum? YES

Do we want our tall ships at South Street? YES

Do we want a vibrant public food market supplied by local sources? YES

Do we want public use of public buildings? YES

YES, it’s all there, if we will all speak up and be heard! Let Mayor de Blasio and our other elected leaders know where you stand. Just drop him a line. Write a note to Councilmember Chin. Let Gale Brewer hear from you.

Here’s how:

Mayor Bill de Blasio of the Mayor/Contact the Mayor

The Honorable Bill de Blasio
Mayor of the City of New York
City Hall
New York, NY 10007

 City Council Member Margaret Chin 

The Honorable Margaret Chin
Member, New York City Council
Chatham Green, 165 Park Row
Suite 11
New York, NY 10038

Manhattan Borough President Gale A. Brewer

The Honorable Gale A. Brewer
Manhattan Borough President
1 Centre Street, 19th floor
New York, NY 10007

Feel free to add a few of your own local political leaders. And please copy Save Our Seaport. We’d like to share a word here and there, in case your neighbor wants some inspiration.

Download the above as a PDF



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