Howard Hughes scales back Downtown development plans

The new proposal includes a 42-story tower near the South Street Seaport that will be 494 feet tall

From left: David Weinreb and rendering for the South Street Seaport project
From left: David Weinreb and rendering for the South Street Seaport project

The Howard Hughes Corporation has scaled back its plans for a residential tower just south of the Brooklyn Bridge that has been met with opposition from the local community who fears that the building will not fit in the historic district.

Howard Hughes scaled back the plans about 25 percent, according to the Wall Street Journal. New plans include a 42-story tower that will stand 494 feet, rather than the earlier proposed 52 stories and 650 feet. The developer has also said that 30 percent of the project’s units will be affordable. The affordable units would be located in the nearby historic buildings, rather than the new tower itself, according to the newspaper.

Howard Hughes would also pay for a new stretch of the East River Waterfront Esplanade that would extend from under the Brooklyn Bridge to John Street, according to the Journal.

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The developer has been meeting with Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer and other officials. The plans still have to go through the formal public review process and receive approval from the City Council.

Local councilwoman Margaret Chin has said she won’t support the tower in its current form. Brewer agreed with her. In a statement, cited by the newspaper, the borough president said, “building a tower at the South Street Seaport is like building a tower at Colonial Williamsburg.” [WSJ] — Claire Moses