The Real Deal New York

Staten Island borough president wins Mt. Manresa name game

Judge rules James Oddo can name streets at Savo Bros.' condo project whatever he wants
February 12, 2016 02:35PM

It appears James Oddo will have his revenge on developer Savo Brothers, after a state Supreme Court judge granted the Staten Island borough president permission to label streets at a Savo Brothers residential project with names symbolic of greed and deceit.

Judge Philip Minardo ruled Thursday that Oddo is allowed to name the streets whatever he wants, despite the developer complaining that the names chosen by the borough president – Cupidity Drive, Fourberie Lane and Avidity Place – are “derogatory.”

Cupidity means greed, according to Politico, while fourberie is synonymous with trickery or deception, and avidity comes from a Latin word that also connotes greed.

While Savo Brothers claimed the names chosen by the borough president were “an abuse of [his] discretion,” according to court documents, Minardo ruled Thursday that “it is within Oddo’s discretion to decide if the street names of the residents of the Borough of Staten Island should reflect greed, a Lazy Bird or a fallen hero.”

Oddo fought fiercely against Savo Brothers’ plans for a 250-unit townhouse development on the site of Mount Manresa, a century-old former Jesuit retreat in Staten Island. He delayed designating house numbers at the project last year, and then rejected nine rather pleasant street names at the project– such as Timber Lane and Lamb Run, and Ambert Heights Drive — that were suggested by the developer.

The borough president argued that Timber Lane was particularly insensitive, given how trees were cut down at the Mount Manresa site to make way for the residential project.

In a statement after Judge Minardo’s ruling, Oddo said the court decision “is not a victory because it will not bring back the trees, the sacred buildings and the natural topography” of the site. [Politico]Rey Mashayekhi