City halts South Street Seaport tower, launches task force

January 29, 2014 04:15PM

The city has put on hold Howard Hughes Corporation’s plan for a 50-story hotel and apartment tower at the South Street Seaport.

Community Board 1 chair Catherine McVay Hughes announced the halt Tuesday at the board’s monthly meeting, telling the assembled crowd that a “community-driven” South Street Seaport Task Force including community members, elected officials, the South Street Seaport Museum and the city’s Economic Development Corp. is to be formed.

The move is a big delay for the developer. Howard Hughes Corp. planned to launch a city land use review process of the plans, including restoring the landmarked Tin Building, adding a food market and constructing a new marina, later this year. The company previously said its controversial 600-foot residential tower is necessary to fund the infrastructure improvements it has promised. Local residents say┬áthe SHoP Architect-designed structure doesn’t fit with the area, however.

CB1 chair Hughes told the crowd that more details on the planned task force — plans she said were hammered out among Councilwoman Margaret Chin, Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer and Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver — will be available next week. [Tribeca Tribune]Julie Strickland