Mayor Michael Bloomberg tore into City Council for formally blocking the sale of city-owned 22 Reade Street, the New York Post reported. The Council opposed the plan to sell 22 Reade Street, where the Department of City Planning has its offices, because City Council Speaker Christine Quinn and her supporters want a guarantee from the Mayor’s office that the building would become a museum for a nearby African burial ground, the Post said.
Bloomberg reportedly said the only way to do that would be to sell the property, then work with a developer to build the museum at the site. He noted that the city needs the income from the sale.
The City Council voted yesterday to reject the sale, which the Mayor’s office said would have generated more than $100 million in savings and reduced the city’s real estate footprint. “While today’s vote will enable other elements of the plan to go forward, 22 Reade Street—which needs more than $20 million in capital repairs just to remain usable in the near term—will continue to deteriorate rather than host a new museum and generate the considerable property tax revenue projected under the Civic Center plan,” Bloomberg said in a statement.
Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer previously announced his opposition to Bloomberg’s plan to sell 22 Reade Street, along with two other city-owned Lower Manhattan buildings. Community representatives in the City Hall area also objected to the sale, as previously reported.
Developers Vornado Realty Trust, Toll Brothers and Kushner Companies were all seen touring 22 Reade Street, in addition to nearby 346 Broadway and 49-51 Chambers Street, which the city is also seeking to sell. [NYPost] — Hayley Kaplan