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Thread: Dept of Sanitation Garage in Hudson Square

  1. #331


    Sanitation Department Building Plan for SoHo May End Up in Court

    By PETER KIEFER, Staff Reporter of the Sun | August 27, 2008

    Residents of SoHo are pledging to take the city to court if the Department of Sanitation's plans to build a 150-foot-high garage and fueling center just blocks from the Holland Tunnel move forward.

    Neighnorhood residents are pledginf to take the Department of Sanitation to court if it goes through with a plan to build a 150-foot- high garage and fueling center in this spot. (Konrad Fiedler)

    At a City Planning Commission hearing today, resident groups are expected to say the proposal to build a 427,000-square-foot facility at Spring and Washington streets would worsen what is already substandard air quality in the area and create additional environmental and health concerns, as well as increase street congestion.

    "We would prefer that calmer heads prevail, but we are prepared to go to court," a spokesman for the nearby 1 million-square-foot St. John's office building, Michael Kramer, said yesterday. Mr. Kramer is working in concert with the local Community Board 2 and an opposition group that calls itself

    This Deal Stinks, all of which are expected to testify today.

    The Bloomberg administration wants to use the site, which is currently occupied by the United Parcel Service, to consolidate garbage trucks that service districts 1, 2, and 5 — roughly encompassing Manhattan between Midtown and Canal Street — and turn a smaller garage just to the south into a truck wash and refueling depot. The depot would store 13,000 gallons of fuel and oil and would service a number of other city agencies.
    UPS's offices would be relocated to the ground floor.

    The western edge of SoHo has experienced a renaissance over the last several years and now boasts a number of high-end retail stores and a several high-profile residential condominiums, including Philip Johnson's Urban Glass House at Washington and Spring streets and the $82.5 million, 14-story 505 Greenwich condominium building. The Trump SoHo, a condo hotel, is rising nearby, at Spring and Varick streets.

    The upcoming fight highlights the challenge the city faces in trying to find real estate in Manhattan to house the infrastructure needed to perform necessary services such as sanitation. The new facility would help the department comply with its legal obligation to vacate Chelsea's Gansevoort Peninsula sanitation.

    In a statement, a spokesman for the Department of Sanitation, Keith Mellis, said the department is seeking a building that would house 62 collection trucks, 15 dump trucks, and nine salt spreaders.

    "The building would allow the DSNY to vacate existing facilities that are within the grounds of the Hudson River Park. DSNY currently fuels other city agency vehicles at all of our facilities citywide as long as refueling doesn't interfere with department operational needs/requirements," Mr. Mellis said.

    A local restaurant owner and community board member, Philip Mouquinho, said the area is already overtaxed with car and truck congestion, which he says has resulted in some of the worst air quality in the entire Northeast.

    "We are already burdened with the one district garage here, the UPS facility that has 150 trucks, the Holland Tunnel, and the maintenance trucks that are on Pier 40. On top of that congestion and pollution, you are going to give us two more district garages with a 30,000-gallon fuel dump? It's insanity," he said.

    The project falls within the district of the City Council speaker, but a spokeswoman for Christine Quinn said she has yet to take a position.

    Manhattan's president, Scott Stringer, opposes the plan. He says that while a new garage on the Lower West Side to serve districts 1 and 2 made sense, the department should find an alternate site for trucks that serve District 5 in Midtown.

    A spokesman for UPS, Norman Black, said the company's cooperation was contingent upon the sanitation department's ability to get the project through the city's land use review process.

    © 2008 The New York Sun,

  2. #332


    Although Philip Mouquinho is a well spoken and an outspoken individual for the community, I don't believe he is still a community board 2 member.

    Actually the project is not blocks from the Holland Tunnel it straddles the Holland Tunnel and abuts on one of its airshafts.

    I have heard figures around $400.? million to build this garage. And also a figure of $1.8 to $3 mil per year in fines if the sanitation department doesn't leave Gansevoort pier. If that is the case it would take at the high side 133 years to cover the cost of the new facility versus paying a fine. Again I am not sure exactly what those figures are, but hopefully someone here can straighten out the math a bit.

    We are coming upon hard times and the city really has to do some soul searching to come up with the money for this exercise. Also what revenue generating source does HRP have to fill the $3,000,000 fine? It seems every time they throw out an RFP no one seems interested other than not for profit organizations.

    One other contention of congestion in the area is that there is during the afternoon hours a contingent of buses that serve FEGS on Vandam and Hudson. Why they put a facility that is primarily served by private transportation services in an area already jammed with traffic is beyond reason.
    Last edited by CBTwo; August 27th, 2008 at 06:00 PM.

  3. #333
    NYC Aficionado from Oz Merry's Avatar
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    Oct 2002

    Default Discovering Hudson Square

    Downtown Express | Sept. 26 - Oct. 2, 2008

    Discovering Hudson Square

    Trinity Real Estate, which is sponsoring an application to create a Hudson Square Business Improved District, said it hopes the BID will open within a year and begin looking for ways to improve the look of the streets and the neighborhood’s traffic problems.

    Hudson Square veterans chew over what’s going on

    By Josh Rogers

    Hudson Square, in a sense, is 10 times behind its neighbors. The neighborhood still gets fewer than one million Google hits compared to many millions for its more popular border areas — Soho, Greenwich Village and Tribeca — but that can be seen as a sign of progress. A year ago, there were 100 times more annual Google searches for Soho and Tribeca than there were for the newer neighborhood, according to a search survey done by Trinity Church, the Square’s largest property owner.

    The Square’s southern and western borders are undeniably Canal St. and the Hudson River, but there’s no consensus in the other directions. Give or take a block or two, the other boundaries are Sixth Ave. and Leroy St. But then some still think of the area as western Soho or the southern Village.
    Once home to the city’s printing industry, the neighborhood has more and more media firms such as Viacom, MTV and WNYC Radio along with a small, but growing residential population — thanks to a rezoning to allow apartments and condos several years ago.

    Trinity is proceeding with its city application to create a Business Improvement District in part of the neighborhood and hopes to have it begin operating by the middle of next year. Five years ago, the church’s BID effort was stymied by community opposition, but this time Community Board 2 is overwhelmingly in favor of the effort because Trinity took the neighborhood’s residential blocks out of the district application.

    Carl Weisbrod, who heads Trinity’s real estate division, said the BID will focus on what’s important to residents and workers — improving the “mean quality of the streets.” With snarling traffic from the Holland Tunnel and Canal St. making it difficult to get around, residents and workers want more pedestrian safety and better-looking sidewalks, Weisbrod said.

    Neighborhood surveys show people are satisfied with the security and cleanliness of the neighborhood so the BID will not take on those traditional BID functions, he added. BIDS are supervised by the city’ Dept. of Small Business Services and are funded by taxes on the district’s building property owners.

    Weisbrod, who used to run the city’s largest BID as president of the Downtown Alliance, said it’s still a “daunting challenge to attract the type of retail residents and commercial tenants want. Retailers want round the clock demand.”

    He said famed Tribeca chef David Bouley’s recent deal with Trinity to open a restaurant at 10 Hudson Sq. (Varick between Charlton and Vandam Sts.) will draw more people to the area. But despite the large number of small, interesting restaurants already in the Square, Weisbrod doesn’t see the neighborhood developing like restaurant-heavy Tribeca, which he said will always be more residential than its northern counterpart.

    He sees the Square more as a creative district, with new media and entertainment firms dominating.

    Phil Mouquinho, who opened PJ Charlton restaurant off the beaten path on Greenwich St. in 1980, said he definitely notices the change in customers.
    “We’ve gone from the printers, the policemen and truck drivers” to some financial industry workers, “then morphed into media types — Miramax folks, lawyers in the film business, publicists,” Mouquinho said.

    He’s updated the “old fashioned” Italian menu with dishes like watermelon salad and sautéed vegetables with garlic and oil, but many still opt for the ravioli with sauce.

    “Makes them feel like home,” Mouquinho said.

    He said he likes seeing more restaurants in the neighborhood and thinks of it as help, not as competition.

    “More attracts more….We don’t have the pedestrian traffic most places enjoy,” he explained. “Spring St. tends to generate its own pedestrian flow, but on Vandam, King, Charlton, even Houston, there’s not much.”

    He remembers seven different restaurants in less than 20 years at one spot on Hudson and Charlton Sts. and said a new Japanese-French eatery, Archipelago, will be there soon. The restaurants that make it in the Square tend to have owners who do a lot themselves rather than the large-staff, “delegate and regulate” model. But he said Bouley, who is in a “league by himself,” should not have that problem because his restaurants are such a draw. Bouley has not said yet what kind of eatery he will be opening on Varick St.

    Mouquinho said he and many small business owners are worried about the turbulence on Wall St., but judging how he weathered the stock market crash of ’87, he thinks the effects won’t be felt in Hudson Square until 2009.

    “It’ll be a lean mean January to June of next year,” Mouquinho said. “We’ll be okay for the holiday.”

    Similarly, Weisbrod said “the softness in the financial markets tends to have a ripple effect, but we haven’t seen it yet.”

    Mouquinho said the neighborhood did surprisingly well after 9/11 because many Lower Manhattan firms relocated temporarily to the north. It took a turn for the worse, a year or so later, and has been rebounding well since.

    He and many others in the community think the biggest threat to the neighborhood is the city’s plan to build a 120-foot Sanitation garage on the UPS lot at Washington and Spring Sts. The plan is also opposed by Community Boards 1 and 2 and Borough President Scott Stringer.

    Opponents say the site can accommodate a garage for garbage trucks from Boards 1 and 2 in Lower Manhattan but should not have to take trucks from Board 5 in Midtown and part of Chelsea, particularly since those trucks will have to traverse most of Manhattan to get to its marine transfer station on E. 91st St.

    The city has rejected all of the opponents’ suggested alternatives for a District 5 garage, saying the most cost-effective plan is to build one facility for three districts.

    Mouquinho expects City Planning to approve the plan with only minor changes in October. He is a member of the Community Sanitation Steering Committee, a group of neighbors and property owners fighting the plan. He said if the City Council gives the final approval — the vote is expected before the end of the year — his group is likely to sue.

    Mouquinho said his group has already retained Kenneth McCallion, a prominent plaintiffs attorney who has had successful lawsuits against Dow Chemical, Shoreham Nuclear Power Plant and in the Exxon Valdez oil spill case. The group has consultant studies suggesting property values in the neighborhood will drop 30 to 40 percent with the city plan, Mouquinho said.

    He feels certain the issue will be resolved in court but he thinks it all could be settled if the city were open to alternatives.

    “Why can’t we do it in a responsible way that’s fair to everybody,” he said.

  4. #334

    Default Rendering....

    Here is a rendering of the garage and salt shed...this is the view from the west side highway...looks absurd to me - such a big block

  5. #335

    Default Eye Candy

    The Salt Shed is supposed to be 60 feet high and the garage 118-120 feet high. Are my eyes playing tricks on me or is the scale of the rendering dishonest ? Manhattan Borough President Stringer asks that the Salt Shed be located "elsewhere" and he has proposed five alternative sites.

    Both the Community Boards and the MBPO have insisted that the Midtown MN 5 district garage be located in midtown (for any number of operational and environmental reasons). This would take an additional 30 feet off the height of the building. No free employee parking, subtract 15 feet and suddenly it is the height of the St. John's Center. Maybe use some basement space for less intensive activities, and suddenly you can put a rooftop park on top that starts at Canal Street and goes to the top of the St. John's Center.

    Let's find a better solution driven by community consensus rather than a private settlement agreement !

  6. #336
    Disgruntled Optimist lofter1's Avatar
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    Jun 2005
    NYC - Downtown


    I agree that the proposal for the DOS garage / salt shed are terrible and should be re-thought from any number of angles.

    The roof top of the St. John's Center (a privately owned building) has been slated for additional development (there are thousands of un-used FAR available at that site). One proposal from TEN Arquitectos includes some green space on the roof there ...

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  7. #337

    Default Hudson Rise is a better solution

    Attached is a revised rendering of the HUDSON RISE concept (2.5 acre rooftop park starting at Canal Street) which would
    incorporate a two-district DSNY garage at Spring Street.

    Yes, as per the Manhattan Borough President, the Midtown MN5 Sanitation garage and the salt shed would have to be located elsewhere...

    Comments anyone?
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  8. #338
    Disgruntled Optimist lofter1's Avatar
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    NYC - Downtown


    So ... the building(s) in that render would be purely a parking garage for DSNY vehicles?

    No offices? No UPS parking?

    Visually and conceptually this proposal is far more in the direction that should be considered. The park-bridge over Spring Street is great. The majority of the builk at the new Washington / Spring / West building should NOT rise above the current hreight of the St. John's building to the north (as it seems is shown).

    Where would the salt shed & maintenance facility be (re)-located? Is the current DSNY facility at Clarkson / Washington / Houston completely out of play? The other previously-proposed location at W 30th / Eleventh Avenue should be brought back into play.

  9. #339
    Disgruntled Optimist lofter1's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    NYC - Downtown


    After looking at the pdf image I see that the 3rd Floor (hgihest level at the north end) will be DSNY offices.

    Is there a website where more info / renders are available?

  10. #340

    Default Hudson Rise provides comprehensive solutions

    We have further attached floor plans to make this plan more transparent.
    There would be 13,000 sf of space on the second floor for DSNY offices,
    17,000 to 27,300 sf of space available on a shared basis with UPS on
    the ground floor for employee parking should that be deemed desirable.

    Finding a better site for the Salt Shed should properly be in the hands of the Community Boards and the Manhattan Borough President. At the City Planning Vote, Commissioner Angela Cavalucci, R.A. suggested in explaining her vote against the DSNY proposal that her office had identified five suitable sites to relocate the Salt Shed.

    Manhattan MN 6 is currently housed in midtown at 606 West 30th Street.
    Because DSNY chose to send them back to East 73rd Street when that garage has been re-built (rather than MN 5 which was not invited back)
    this is why this "orphan" has been foisted upon Spring Street. MN 5 could move right into the MN 6 garage the next day (it is a smaller district).

    Will the City continue to turn a "deaf ear" to realistic alternatives?

    Now it is time for Council Speaker Quinn to hear from her constituents
    demanding a better solution !
    Attached Files Attached Files

  11. #341

    Default Salt shed

    Isn't the salt shed in the structure right in front of the holland tunnel vent? (where the maintenance facility is now).

    I think these renderings look amazing. To me it seems like a real win-win as the neighborhood gets the trucks off the street (which smell and look horrible), gets additional green areas and does its part to help support the city's infrastructure.

  12. #342

    Default Sanitation Garage

    I agree. This is much better than the plan proposed by the Department of Sanitation. The structures proposed by DSNY would overwhelm the area. Your proposal, on the other hand, would incorporate community elements.
    I also agree with the Manhattan Borough President and with CB 2 that the salt shed and MN 5 garage don't belong here.

  13. #343

    Post Hudson Rise

    Quote Originally Posted by NYer View Post
    I agree. This is much better than the plan proposed by the Department of Sanitation.

    Yes, a low-rise structure with a 'green open-to-the-public roof': nice.

    This new design proposal seems somewhat similar to Riverside State Park or one of the many Urban Rooftop Gardens seen in high-density cities like Japan & Singapore. That building would be a good spot for some rooftop greening: even if (for maintenance reasons) it has to be astroturf.

    Building Rooftop Gardens: information -

    Rooftop Gardens: public perception -

    Riverbank State Park -
    Last edited by infoshare; October 13th, 2008 at 01:12 PM.

  14. #344


    I find it amazing that DSNY needs 30' ceiling heights for their operation, while UPS which has large trailers need only 15'. If the ceiling height is lowered the ramps could be shorter, therefore giving more usable floor space to the garage. If the DSNY needs the additional ceiling height for maintaining their trucks they don't need an entire floor, but only one or two spots which can pop up into the floor above. If they limit their ceiling heights to 15' the overall structure will be 30' shorter. And no they shouldn't be using that extra 30' to park their private cars.

    I really don't think turf is considered a "green" roof in it's present day context.

  15. #345

    Exclamation Sanitation Garage

    Quote Originally Posted by CBTwo View Post
    I find it amazing that DSNY needs 30' ceiling heights for their operation, while UPS which has large trailers need only 15'. If the ceiling height is lowered the ramps could be shorter, therefore giving more usable floor space to the garage.
    Good point: my guess is that DSNY probably needs a lot more overhead space for air circulation: given that they are 'garbage' trucks.

    LINK -
    LINK -
    Last edited by infoshare; October 19th, 2008 at 11:09 AM.

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