Benenson, Mack say they should be allowed to build taller in EV due to “extraordinary construction costs”

Developers say soft soil is a burden, and they need four extra floors at 432 E. 14th
January 24, 2017 09:18AM

From left: 432 East 14th Street, Bill Benenson and Richard Mack (Credit: Google Maps)

Benenson Capital Partners and Mack Real Estate Group are seeking to get around zoning rules in the East Village to put up a taller building.

The development team wants to add four floors to what was supposed to be an eight-story rental building at 432 East 14th Street, the New York York Post reported. Benenson TRData LogoTINY and Mack argue that “unusually elevated groundwater levels” and resulting soft soil on the property will cause “extraordinary construction costs,” that they hope to make up for by adding height to their project. The extra floors will allow for 155 units compared to 114, 20 percent of which will be affordable.

The developers will present their case for a zoning variance to the city’s Board of Standards and Appeals on Tuesday.

Community Board 3 and the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation argue that a taller building would be out of context with the neighborhood and that the developers should’ve known about the soil conditions at the property, since Benenson has owned the site since at least the 1950s.

Benenson is also currently working on an apartment tower in Downtown Brooklyn with Rose Associates. [NYP] — Kathryn Brenzel