The Real Deal New York

Manhattan beep steps into dispute between JDS, union

Gale Brewer writes letter to Michael Stern about safety “concerns”
March 25, 2015 10:15AM

Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer is getting involved in a dispute between the city’s construction union and Michael Stern’s JDS Development.

JDS, in partnership with Property Markets Group, is planning to build one of New York’s tallest towers without the help of any unionized labor. Gary LaBarbera, president of the Building and Construction Trades Council of Greater New York, has said that JDS hires “irresponsible subcontractors,” according to Capital New York.

The workers JDS uses, according to the union leader, have had  “no safety training,” the magazine reported.

Now, Brewer has also sent a letter to Stern, stating that she has “concerns” about safety. The letter also implied that JDS doesn’t treat its employees well, according to Capital.

A JDS spokesperson didn’t comment on the letter, but said that Brewer referred to complaints, rather than actual violations with the Department of Buildings, according to the website.

“As a developer, you have a legal as well as ethical obligation to comply with safety rules, and to employ contractors and sub-contractors that adequately train, protect and compensate their workers,” the Manhattan beep wrote in a letter dated February 20 and cited by Capital. Brewer also alleges a lack of safety at construction sites in the letter, which could “put lives in jeopardy.”

JDS is planning an 80-story tower at 111 West 57th Street. At 1,400 feet, the tower would stand taller than nearby One57 and 432 Park.

Public Advocate Letitia James sent a letter voicing similar concerns to JDS in January. [Capital NY] — Claire Moses