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Judge’s Ruling Puts Pier 55 Construction Back on Track

Posted on July 21, 2016

A Manhattan judge’s ruling is allowing construction to resume at Pier 55, a 2.7-acre, $130 million island park in the Hudson River funded primarily by a foundation created by media mogul Barry Diller and his wife, fashion designer Diane von Furstenberg.

A judge for the appellate division of the state Supreme Court issued a ruling late Monday to lift a temporary injunction against the Hudson River Part Trust, which is developing Pier 55, allowing construction on the project to continue at least until September when the full court case is heard.

The City Club of New York has repeatedly sued to block the project, claiming that the project has given away public parkland to a private entity without the right checks and balances, and that there are environmental concerns. Based on those allegations, an appeals judge issued an injunction to put the project on hold earlier this month, after construction had begun on Pier 55 in late-June.

Now that the injunction has been lifted, workers will continue driving the first piles to support the pier’s balcony over the Hudson River, a spokesperson for Pier 55 said. The work is limited under the judge’s ruling, with the court papers indicating that the new order allows “respondents to drive the first nine piles to support the platform for the ‘balcony’ part of the project which extends over the river,” but that further construction is denied until the appeal is heard on Sept. 6.

A spokesperson for Pier55 urged the City Club, a civic organization, to stop blocking the project, pointing out that it has already been approved by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the state Department of Environment Conservation and the local community board.

“With the City Club’s latest charade behind us, we will get back to building the new public park that local residents have sought for years,” the statement said. “Now that both state and federal courts have denied its demand for an injunction, the City Club should take this cue to finally end its absurd crusade against the wishes of the community. We remain committed to making Pier55 a reality and providing new green space for all New Yorkers to enjoy.”

Source: New York Business Journal

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