The Real Deal New York

Residents fear high-rise will replace Citibank after fire

January 13, 2014 01:45PM

A building fire can create fear — not just for the safety of residents, but for the fate of the property itself. City Council member Mark Levine, who represents Upper Manhattan, said neighbors are concerned that a six-alarm blaze at a Citibank in Morningside Heights will lead to a high-rise building replacing it – thus disrupting the flavor of the neighborhood.

“There is a constant fear of new development out of scale with the existing neighborhood,” Levine wrote on Twitter.

The two-story bank branch at 2861 Broadway Near West 111th Street was on fire for more than 30 hours both Saturday and yesterday. Three civilians and five firefighters suffered minor injuries. The blaze raged on after a floor collapsed just as firefighters had contained the blaze, published reports show.

Fire officials do not suspect arson, the New York Times said. [NYT]Mark Maurer

  • rottenpear

    Good of Councilman Mark Levine to voice the fears of residents. Maybe this will begin to shut up all the idiots/racists/anti-Semites who said he was a tool of the RE industry during his campaign just because he is Jewish.

    Contextual zoning/development is extremely important for neighborhoods keeping their feel. If there is as building built there it should be the size of neighboring buildings, at the least, and hopefully retain some ground level retail and/or community space.

    From what I’ve read though the branch building is going to remain, and be repaired. I wonder if Citibank owns it. If so they will likely keep it as it’s a prime corner location near a subway, Columbia, restaurants, Westside Market, etc.

  • Crian Bashman

    A 2-story building is more out context than a taller building here. Plenty of 12-18 story buildings in the area, no reason this site shouldn’t be one as well, if the owner decides to rebuild.

    • rottenpear

      The building is currently 2-stories, that is the benchmark and precedent. The building should be repaired. That should be our aim. Our aim should not be “12-18 story buildings”… We have too many of them already. If a new building HAS to be built then it should conform to progressive development standards: low-rise, affordable housing, community use, etc. Developers in NYC have made this work recently, and can make it work now…. Tho like i said citibank ain’t going anywhere if they own it. ;D

  • David

    I love when there’s always a few Libtards that claim to speak for everyone else and bully a man into doing what THEY want him to do. What a disgusting system. They are just jealous losers that never accomplished anything.

    • rottenpear

      Who is “him,” and who are the “libtards?” You’ve clearly made a point, but didn’t do it clearly.