City certifi es SoHo/NoHo rezoning plan despite lawsuit
BY MARK HALLUM
The City Planning Commission
certifi ed their plan to rezone the
neighborhoods of SoHo and Noho
for the fi rst time in decades, which they say
could produce up to 900 affordable units
with new developments.
The plan still requires further review before
it is fi nalized, but Mayor Bill de Blasio’s
administration expects the rezoning to level
the playing fi eld for low-income New Yorkers
who cannot afford the neighborhood
that averages about $8,000 a month for a
About 66% of households in these areas
have an income of over $100,000, the
administration says, and scarcity is what
really contributed to the high prices.
Up next is the Uniform Land Use Review
“Every New Yorker should have
the opportunity to live in transit-rich,
amenity-fi lled neighborhoods like SoHo
and NoHo. Built on years of community
engagement, this proposal was crafted with
a lens focused on fair housing, an equitable
recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic,
reinforcing SoHo/NoHo as a regional hub
for jobs and commerce, and preserving and
augmenting the arts,” CPC Chair Marisa
Lago said. “Through permanently affordable
housing requirements and support for
the arts, this plan is a giant step forward
Historic buildings on Greene Street in SoHo.
towards a more equitable and even livelier
New York City.”
According to the Department of City
Planning, 19% of these housing units will
fall within the scope of the city’s inclusionary
housing mandates, equalling anywhere
from about 621 to 940 units that will supposedly
fall within the price range of low
income New Yorkers, as released in a draft
of the plan in October.
“Today’s certifi cation is a clear win for
housing, equity and smart city planning.
To build a more equitable and more affordable
city, every neighborhood must do
their part,” Jessica Katz, Executive Director
of Citizens Housing and Planning Council,
said. “The proposed rezoning creates an opportunity
for SoHo/NoHo – two neighborhoods
with virtually no affordable housing
whatsoever – to contribute to solve NYC’s
housing crisis. The plan shared today is
thoughtful regarding the historic and landmarked
districts while ensuring that New
York City continues to move forward.”
Claims that the proposal will bring little
affordable housing while putting historical
locations at risk have long been contested
by the de Blasio administration which believes
that the rezoning is overdue for the
mostly upper-crust community. Opponents
say the zoning change will pave the way for
the displacement of current residents while
increasing the number of big-box retailers
in the area.
“These claims have been completely and
repeatedly debunked,” mayoral spokesman
Mitch Schwartz said. “This group has spent
months telling anyone who will listen that
SoHo is actually a diverse and affordable
neighborhood, and it’s just one ULURP
hearing away from ruin. But New Yorkers
aren’t fooled; they know it’s time for
a rezoning plan that fi nally makes these
iconic areas accessible again.”
Andrew Berman, Executive Director of
Village Preservation, has been a primary
accuser of the de Blasio administration for
creating an environment that benefi ts the
real estate industry, casting doubt that it
will bring true affordable housing to Lower
“Wrapped in a false veneer of affordable
housing and social justice equity, de
Blasio’s SoHo/NoHo proposal is a fi re sale
giveaway of enormously valuable real estate
that will destroy hundreds of units of existing
affordable housing and create few if any
new ones,” Berman said.
Three teens booked in series of 4 train slashings
BY ROBERT POZARYCKI
Three teenagers who were apprehended
on May 14 after a series
of slashing attacks within subway
stations in Manhattan that morning have
been booked on criminal charges, police
announced on May 15.
Taquarious Soto-Burgos, 19, of Duryea
Place in Brooklyn and Joseph Foster, 18,
of Seward Avenue in the Bronx were
both charged with robbery and criminal
possession of a weapon. An unidentifi ed
16-year-old boy was also charged with
second-degree assault, along with robbery
and weapons possession.
Law enforcement sources said the trio
attacked four men within about 12 minutes,
between 4:26 and 4:37 a.m. on May 14, on
board the 4 line between Union Square and
In the fi rst incident, cops said, they attacked
a 44-year-old man on board a Downtownbound
4 train at Union Square, slicing the
left side of his face with a sharp object before
departing the train at Union Square.
Deputy Inspector Steven Hill announces details regarding the arrests of
suspects in connection with slashings on the 4 train in Manhattan.
The victim was brought to Bellevue
Hospital for treatment of his injury.
Police learned a short time later that the
PHOTO BY DEAN MOSES
crooks had also attacked a 44-year-old man
on the 4 train during a robbery attempt.
One of the suspects sliced the victim’s left
cheek with a sharp object, while his cohorts
took his money and cellphone.
After departing the train, law enforcement
sources said, a suspect tossed the
victim’s cellphone onto the tracks.
The victim was treated for his injuries at
NewYork-Presbyterian Lower Manhattan
Just eight minutes later, police said, the
three teens confronted two men, ages 40
and 41, on board a southbound 4 train at
Astor Place. The trio punched the victims
repeatedly, and one of the suspects slashed
the 40-year-old victim across his nose.
Following the assault, the suspects
departed the train and fl ed the scene.
Both victims were also taken to Bellevue
Hospital for treatment.
As police offi cials announced Friday
afternoon, the three teenagers, and a fourth
individual, were picked up just before noon
at the 79th Street station on the 1 line on
the Upper West Side. They matched descriptions
and images of the perpetrators
that police obtained soon after the three
Schneps Media May 20, 2021 3