Friday, March 28, 2008

Renderings Presented By T.B.

I just found these renderings on flickr

thanks to "gabby.warshawer" !!

What do the Toll Brothers Have to Offer: Reactions to the 4/26 Presentation

As you all know, last night representatives of the Toll Brothers' Bond Street development team took the opportunity of the CB6 Meeting at PS 32 to tell their side of the story. Personally I think it's a good sign that they were there at all, as opposed to acting like us and the CB6 didn't exist, but as you can see it was a mixed bag.

The following is from a message posted to the FOB list, by a neighbor:

Hi All,

Here's my addition to the reports about last night's CB6-Toll Brothers' meeting.

The lead guy and much of his crew came either without doing their homework, or intending to obfusticate.

They were asked about "affordable" housing - but they had no hard $ figures as to how much a simple apartment might cost. The figure of a family of 4 making $48,000 annually and about 1/3 of that going for rent was thrown around. That's about $1500/ month - after taxes. You do the math. Also, how many of our senior citizens will be able to go anywhere near that when they
are making less than $12,000 a year from Social Security. It was also mentioned that there would be two different construction crews - one for the "affordable" apartments, and one for the "market can also do the figuring on that situation.

They were asked about seems they have changed their tune about how to build the garage (which will fit LESS then half the number of cars per apartment). When last detailed, the garage would be built underground. Not so anymore, I guess they figured out most cars don't double as submarines. They are talking about the possibility of valet parking...probably because of the tight fit in their proposed garage. It is now proposed that the garages (one on each side of First Street between Bond and the canal)will be built at ground level and covered by some of the
designs by the landscape architect. Nowhere was it mentioned whether the 12 foot platform on which the entire development was supposed to be built on is still in the plans. Is it because that at the scoping meeting that idea, which would create an ugly water challanged Bond Street during rains, received a lot of criticism/ or is it because they forgot to mention it they for got to mention the ...

Shadows from the tall buildings. They did say that they have worked on that issue, but forgot the drawings . Yeah.

They were asked about the water issues, and here their lack of homework really showed. The engineer who has worked on this issue essentially stated that they will build two new systems to deal with sanitary and unsanitary waste water - and a treatment plant to deal with the sanitary water which, when treated and dumped into the canal, will be cleaner than the canal water...isn't that water cleaner than the canal water even BEFORE they treat it? Is this "treatment" another sop or smoke screen to hide the fact that their other system to deal with "unsanitary" water is nothing more than an additional pipe to channel this water to the old and soon to be very overtaxed main which, during rainstorms, overflows into the canal? One can hear the sewer caps popping already.

They did not respond coherently to the problem of ground seepage...they are building in a tidal/drainage area. Homes in the area ALREADY have water in their basements during heavy rains (which have increased measurably in the past decade). The Toll project will take away more soil needed for drainage and increase the seepage throughout the neighborhood.

There were other inconsistant and ignorant, at best, comments about the enviromental effects of their project - let others address those. Additionally, effects on schools and public transportation were not mentioned at all, and effects on parking, traffic, and shopping only glanced over. There is so much more to be said, but I'll finish with the obvious realization that, even if everything last night was presented in good faith, these people have no idea of the total enviromental effect of their project - especially when combined with what has already happened on 4th Avenue, and
on Bond and Carroll, and what is planned on Court Street, 360 Smith Street, and the Public Place.

Let's hang tough.


Thursday, March 27, 2008

Meeting Reminder PS 32 Thursday March 27th

Informational presentation by representative for Toll Brothers, Inc. of a pre-certified application, known as 363-365 Bond Street, that would allow the redevelopment of two blocks fronting on the Gowanus Canal including the block bounded by 2nd Street, the canal, 1st Street and Bond Street (Block 458, Lot 1) and part of the adjacent block bounded by Carroll Street, the canal, 1st Street and Bond Street (Block 452, Lot 1 and 15) with a mixed-use development. The proposed project would result in approximately 447 dwelling units, 1,500 gross square footage (gsf) of neighborhood retail space, 1,500 gsf of community facility space, 260 below-grade parking spaces and 0.6-acres of publicly accessible open space along the Gowanus Canal.

P.S 32 Auditorium
317 Hoyt Street
(at Union/Hoyt Streets)
Brooklyn, NY 11231

6:00 PM

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

An Important date coming up for FOB

Meeting Reminder:
Toll Brothers is doing a presentation on their Gowanus Project Plans this week!
Who: Toll Brothers
When: Thurs. March 27
Where: PS 32 (Hoyt Street in Carroll Gardens)
What Time: 6 PM
All are welcome and encouraged to attend!
( thanks )

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Written Response to Toll Brothers Scope Document

Dear Neighbor,

There’s just one week before the March 24th deadline to submit a written response to City Planning regarding the Scope of Work Document for the proposed Toll Brothers development on the Gowanus Canal. In order for the community’s responses to be considered, and the issues we want to be addressed, they must be received in writing by the March 24th deadline.

There are many areas to focus on related to the Toll Brothers project and the Gowanus area, such as: Shadows, Historic Resources, Community Facilities (i.e. Daycare), Neighborhood Character, Hazardous Materials, Infrastructure, Solid Waste and Sanitation, Traffic and Parking, Construction Impacts, and Public Health, to name a few.

How to start? First, go online to look at the Toll Brothers Proposed Draft Scope of Work on Community Board 6’s website:

here, or use the following link:

1) What SPECIFIC issue (or issues) do you have concerns about? Find your issue (if you can) in the Scope Document and note the number of the task and its heading, i.e. “TASK 13: INFRASTRUCTURE”, and be sure to make reference to it in your letter.

2) Go to the City Environmental Quality Review (CEQR) Technical Manual (on CB6 site- see above link). Look up your task (concern) in the CEQR- each task has a chapter. How does the Toll Brothers Scoping Document appear to meet or not meet what’s outlined in the CEQR? Does the scoping document satisfy the community’s concerns?

3) Format for your response: Write an opening paragraph, followed by the specific Task # and Heading and how you think that issue(s) needs to be more thoroughly addressed in the scoping process. The tone of what you write should be specific and incorporate supporting data.

Mail your response to: & Send a copy to:
Robert Dobruskin Community Board 6
Dept. of City Planning 250 Baltic Street
22 Reade St. Brooklyn, NY 11201
New York, NY 10007 Attn: Craig Hammerman, Dist. Manager

Any questions? Please contact us and we will try to help you as best we can. Good luck!

-Friends of Bond

Thursday, March 13, 2008

A reminder… see you there!

A reminder… for those of you able to go today… see you there!

NYC, 10007

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

A Letter to Councilman deBlasio

Honorable Councilman deBlasio,
I don't know who is giving you advice on land development but it is really bad.
You have taken some baby steps in your tepid involvement in the "AtlanticYards" boondoggle (a little late) and Carroll Gardens. You seem to be AWOL on the Toll Bros. Gowanus project. You can be sure that there will be an UNRELENTING WAR on a project that does not deal effectively with the CSOs and brownfield situation by the Gowanus canal. Your political legacy is being written as we speak and will impact your future aspirations.

You will have to weigh your obligations to Bloomberg, his developer friends versus your constituents. It is an an easy choice for a venal, ambitious politician. I hope that does not describe you. I am pleased to see your name printed the garbage cans that grace our commercial corridors. Much more courageous work must be done.

I will work with Park Slope Neighbors, FROGG, Friends of Bond Street, CB6, Park Slope Civic Council and unaffiliated residents of your district to insure that another dangerous boondoggle does not get shoved down our throats.

Paul Heller, Park Slope

Email Bill deBlasio

Monday, March 10, 2008

Documents to help you at the meeting

Dear Neighbor,
Please let us know if can attend the scoping hearing with City Planning on Thursday, 3/13 @ 2:00pm regarding the Toll Brothers development. We would like you to confirm via email that you are attending.

These hearings are extremely important as they give the community a chance to formally raise questions and concerns about the Toll Brothers project. So, if at all possible, we strongly ncourage you to be there- now's the time to speak your mind, from the heart about the possible effects of this large-scale, luxury development on our neighborhood.

Below are two documents to assist you in preparing a spoken statement (up to 3 minutes). You should have as your focus one of the areas outlined in the scoping document, i.e.Public Health or Historic Resources, but cross-overs are fine, too.

Again, please let us know if you will be attending so that we can communicate with you again before Thursday with more information.



Amanda M. Burden, AICP, Director

Department of City Planning
Robert Dobruskin, Director
James Merani, R.A., Deputy Director
22 Reade Street, New York, N.Y. 10007-1216 Room 4E
TEL (212) 720-3420 FAX (212) 720-3495

Protocol for Public Scoping Meetings
- NYC Department of City Planning
Environmental Assessment & Review Division

As per Section 5.07 of the Rules of Procedure for City Environmental Quality Review, as
adopted June 26, 1991, the following will serve as guideline to participation in a public scoping meeting for the preparation of a draft environmental impact statement.
Discussions regarding the scope of work will first be held between lead agency, applicant, interested and involved agencies. Following that discussion, the chair will allow the public to comment in accordance with the rules described below.

1) The Environmental Assessment & Review Division, acting on behalf of the CPC as the

lead agency, will chair the scoping meeting.

2) All attendees of the scoping meeting will sign in on an attendance sheet, clearly printing
their name, address, telephone number and affiliation.

3) Those members of public wishing to speak will also sign in on a "Request for Speaking
Time" sheet at the start of the scoping meeting.

4) Opening remarks will be made by the lead agency, followed by introductions.

5) The applicant and/or consultants, attorneys and representatives will provide a

presentation of the proposal and an overview of the draft scoping document. Potential
impacts, proposed methodologies and assessments will also be discussed.

6) Following the presentation, the lead agency will receive comments from the
representatives of the involved and interested agencies, public officials and community boards regarding methodologies and issues to be addressed in the draft environmental impact statement.

7) All requests for additional information and/or technical memoranda are subject to review
and approval by the lead agency, in this case the Environmental Assessment & Review Division.

8) After the conclusion of the discussions with the interested/involved agencies, public

Robert Dobruskin, Director
James Merani, R.A., Deputy Director
22 Reade Street, New York, N.Y. 10007-1216 Room 4E
TEL (212) 720-3420 FAX (212) 720-3495

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Will you be at the meeting on 3/13 ?

Will you be at the Scoping Meeting on 3/13 ?

If so - please let us know! Mail us at

Saturday, March 8, 2008

Re-cap of Meeting with Craig Hammerman

Here is a quick recap of what happened at Friday's meeting with DM Hammerman

We met with Craig Hammerman at CB6 on Friday morning; FOB (Karla & Lizzie),along with several other people from CORD, FROGG, and CGNA. Craig spokewith us in clarifying detail (on his day off!) about the scoping processand how to prepare for it. He referred to both the scoping documentsubmitted by the Toll Brothers (available via the CB6 website) and the CEQR (City Environmental Quality Review- also available via CB6 site)for specific issues and guidelines that must be addressed through CityPlanning's scoping process. The overall question the community must askis whether the scoping document is sufficient enough and does itsatisfy the community's concerns?

Craig had a few suggestions about how to respond. First, pick an issueor several issues (refer to the CEQR chapter headings) that you wouldlike to focus on. When responding orally- at the hearing on March 13 (upto 3 mins.)- be specific about the issue, but include personal experiences and anecdotes. Let it be heartfelt and know that a live person with a real story can be extremely effective when addressingcomplicated issues related to development. Craig also suggested having'tag teams'. with more than one person speaking to a specific issue. Ifyou want to respond in writing (letters are due March 24), you need tobe very precise and laser-specific. Support the issue or concern that you're addressing with factual data.

The need for a consortium or coalition of various neighborhood groups was also discussed at the end of our meeting. We all expressed a desire to consolidate communication on the web and via email, as well as ways we might strengthen each other's outreach by forming a larger network of concerned, active community groups and their members.

Preparing for the Scoping Meeting:3/13

Hey All
Read Below and get ready for the meeting!

NYC, 10007



Dear Neighbors,

As many of you are aware, the Toll Brothers, a very large, luxury developer has set its sights on two blocks in our neighborhood. Some of you may have attended the community meeting on Monday, March 3rd to learn more about this project. Toll Brothers wants to build approximately six hundred units of housing, ranging in heights up to twelve stories in that three acre space.

Since the area is not zoned for this type of development, several steps must be taken with the city before any construction work can begin.

One of these procedures is a scoping hearing with City Planning where the residents of our neighborhood get to speak their mind, raising important questions and issues about the things they like or dislike about the proposed project.

The following is a list of subjects that the developer must address according to a Scoping Document which must be filed with the city before work can begin on the site. Look over the list. Whether you are concerned, for instance, about how larger-sized buildings might affect your sunlight, how almost 600 new units and their occupants will affect the amount of raw sewage flowing into the canal, or how the additional cars might affect parking and traffic conditions, this is your chance make your voice heard.

At the scoping hearing, each person has three (3) minutes to orally communicate their concerns. It’s best to speak from the heart, sharing a personal anecdote or experience related to your question or area of concern.

Here is the list of subjects:

Land Use, Zoning and Public Policy, Socioeconomic Conditions (what will happen to the residents and businesses as a result of this project), Community Facilities and Services (this includes schools, emergency response availability, health services) Open Space, Shadows, Historic Resources, Urban Design/Visual Resources, Neighborhood Character, Natural Resources, Hazardous Materials, Waterfront Revitalization Program, Infrastructure, Solid Waste and Sanitation Services, Energy, Traffic and Parking, Transit and Pedestrians, Air Quality, Noise, Construction Impacts, Public Health, Alternatives (what kind of development/improvements could you envision there?)


There is also an opportunity to address your concerns in writing. Written comments must be sent in before March 24, 2008 and should be focused on a particular area of concern, using factual data to support your points. If you are planning on writing a letter, one copy should be sent directly to City Planning, to the following address:

Robert Dobruskin
Dept. of City Planning
22 Reade St.
New York, NY 10007

A copy of the same letter should be sent to Community Board 6, to be kept on file:

Community Board 6
250 Baltic St.
Brooklyn, NY 11231

Got any other Ideas? Please leave a comment!

Meeting with Craig Hammerman, District Manager

On Friday March 7th, FOB and a number of community group representatives met with Craig Hammerman, CB6 District manager, to discuss the Toll Brothers Propasal and the related scoping meeting coming up this Thursday March 13.

check back soon for some details of what happened at the meeting

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

More links & reactions to the Toll Brothers proposal

Friends of Bond links

What is Friends Of Bond ?

Welcome to the Friends Of Bond Home Page!!
FRIENDS OF BOND is a group of Bond Street area neighbors who initially came together in response to the proposed Toll Brothers development on the Gowanus Canal. FOB seeks to bring together individual residents and community groups in order to effectively address questions and issues of concern about development in the Gowanus area.

If you wish to get in touch with us, you can reach us at