Missed opportunity: LES co-op wants to re-vote on air rights sale but developers say they’ve moved on

Not enough co-op owners came out to vote on the $58M deal in June, but now residents say they want another chance

TRD New York TRD WEEKEND EDITION /
Oct.October 21, 2018 04:00 PM

(Credit: Seward Park Co-op, Pixabay)

Too late is the message Ascend Group and Optimum Asset Management has for residents of Seward Park Co-op.

The developers of a former nursing home site in the Lower East Side had wanted to buy the air rights from the four-building co-op for $54 million but, after the residents’ June vote failed to generate enough turnout to be binding, the developers moved on with a new plan to build a 26-story tower, according to The Lowdown.

Months later, the co-op residents have come back to the developers saying they were able to drum up enough signatures to hold a second referendum, but the development team rebuffed them saying they’re moving forward without any more delays.

The co-op board informed the residents of the response in a memo saying that “the developers… are not interested in revisiting the air rights proposal and are instead planning to proceed with as-of-right development.”

Seward Park Co-op has a $12 million maintenance bill coming up and now that the air rights sale is a no-go, the co-op board says it has plans to close a $60 million loan “soon.”

In 2010, the co-op’s air rights were appraised at $100 million. [The Lowdown]–Erin Hudson


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