Battle for Greenpoint Waterfront Heats Up; Locals Fight Williamsburg-ization



Eight years after a rezoning paved the way for the Williamsburg waterfront’s transformation into Miami Beach, residents and politicians in neighboring Greenpoint are speaking up about their own shoreline.

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District councilman hopeful Stephen Pierson vowed that he will go to court to reduce the size of planned 40-story towers to 15 or 20 stories. And other opponents of the waterfront redefinition have released renderings of hulking high-rises that dwarf the Manhattan skyline across the river. 

Credit: Save Greenpoint
Credit: Save Greenpoint

The 77 Commercial Street and Greenpoint Landing developments have been the subject of much debate in North Brooklyn and beyond this summer. Together, they would add 12 high-rise towers to the low-slung Greenpoint waterfront and bring 6,100 apartment units to the historically industrial area.

Mr. Pierson, who is running against the incumbent Stephen Levin for the 33rd district council seat, said he would bring the proposals to a court review and at least halve their projected heights.

“The neighborhood can’t support this many residents,” Mr. Pierson told DNAInfo. “The neighborhood already has a dearth of transportation options…And there hasn’t been an environmental impact study done in years. Simply from a community perspective these towers are way out of context for the neighborhood.”

Adding fuel to the fire are renderings by Save Greenpoint, a local preservation network, that emphasize, if not dramatize, the extent of the development projects’ scope in relation to the squat surrounding neighborhood and Midtown Manhattan, which, as illustrated, it rivals in skyscraper-packed immensity.