Zoning Board Voted Yes For The iStar Superblock

Ok, we are getting the iStar superblock.

Well, parking will be an issue as always. I don’t think traffic will change that much; residential doesn’t effect areas as much as commercial traffic-wise.  The beach in that area, which is crowded already, will surely be a mess on hot summer days. I don’t know anything about shadows, but you have to feel for those who live behind them. We are going to get more retail, just no crappy t-shirt stores on boardwalk, please!!!

How long until we see more proposed giant towers for the foundation block?

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43 thoughts on “Zoning Board Voted Yes For The iStar Superblock”

  1. It will be a paradigm shift. The City Council did a major disservice to the Community in not having this vetted in a more inclusive and thorough way. It should not have been left to the ZBA. Unfair to the ZBA and unfair to the citizens.

  2. I can’t believe they actually voted for this. Or maybe I can.
    How self serving are these people. May they all get audited and arrested once the $$ changes hands under the table.

  3. I am fucking psyched! More peeps, increase in demand for alternative transportation! Increased bus demands! Increase in bike infrastructure! Hot damn, I love overcrowding!

  4. The comment you deleted had the names of the Zoning Board commissioners. They are listed on the City’s Web Site. I only included the business that each one was in, so that people can see the conflicts of interest and hold each of their neighbors on the board accountable for what they did to hurt them and their investments in their homes.

  5. This sets a precedent for future proposals. There are many buildings along Broadway that are marginal in the amount of income they generate . Real estate promoters will assemble properties, demolish them and seek to replicate this project.
    This approval has the potential of fundamentally changing Long Beach and not for the better IMHO.

  6. They are not all “scumbag” and posting where they live…..WTF is that about? Are you suggesting something to take place at any or all of their residences, seriously? That is NOT ok.

  7. I understand that, but asking folks to post addresses of them all on my blog in the tone that you did is what I consider a witch hunt. I do not condone that here.

    Also the second post had personal attacks. Please use your own website for that nonsense.

  8. Thank you Brian. I try….. Personal attacks don’t bother me as much anymore. You can’t please everybody..

    I just love how people think I’m profiting off the iStar superblock, especially after I posted numerous opinions/letters from residents saying how much they don’t want it.

  9. How about we stop talking about (let alone inciting) violence? Really, we don’t need to comment about who is going to shoot who over decisions like this. Are we adults from New York who can resolve differences civilly or are we whiny children who resolve things by resorting to name calling followed quickly by violence?

  10. @ Lori, I thought bad PR might be a tool against iStar, but then I posted some of their activities on Patch. They’re developing a parcel in Coney Island that included a large, old Community Garden. The community protested like crazy. To avoid a bad photo-op, iStar sent bulldozers in before dawn and just flattened the garden. I found several stories like that. IStar is a financial giant with fuzzy business dealings in the past, and don’t seem concerned about bad PRICE. For every true bad thing we could expose, they’d just plant 10 favorable articles in the press. I think our last hope was that the Zoning Board had the law on their side, but money talks, nobody walks.

  11. This is like they sold out their own family. I think this is bigger than local politics, think with this amount of money it went way beyond that. Considering 100 years of constant outright criminal corruption, I don’t know why Long Beach is still allowed to govern as a “City.” How many more decades of corruption before someone admits Long Beach doesn’t need more elections, it needs a RICO investigation. Old gangsters had some rules they followed. These gangsters are more like war criminals, raping this City when it was down, after it was ravaged by Sandy. No wonder the Boardwalk was repaired before the bungalows. By “the gangsters” I also include the ruthless iStar professionals backed by international money. My first thought was that some “fix” would be exposed, and some of the board might end up in jail. But the Towers will still be there- with more to follow.

    Besides, they’d just get sentenced to 6 months in a country-club facility, and would have their money waiting safely in the Cayman Islands when they got out. Plus, undoubtedly getting “consulting” jobs from iStar off in a warmer climate.

  12. Curious to know if the zoning board is the final authority? This is especially egregious since at the same time they were selling us out, the Imagine Long Beach Group was meeting to put forth plans to improve our city and sane development of the super block was a priority. I must say I find it very disheartening.

  13. Anthony Lomonte, a Newsday sales manager and the only Republican on the Zoning Board, voted against the proposal. He was immediately told he will be removed from the Board by Zapson.

    You re-elected the Democrats, rejecting the Republicans as representing “the rich property owners”. This is what you got. Half the Council no longer lives in Long Beach. They are selling your town to the highest bidders.

    You got what you deserved.

  14. Max — do you have first hand knowledge that Lomonte was told he will be removed from the ZBA? Can a ZBA member even be removed? — removal is not addressed in the City Charter. Why would the City want to remove Lomonte? That would smack of retribution against a person who is supposed to vote on ZBA matters independent of political influence. Removing him would add credibility to cries of corruption. And they didn’t need his vote anyway.

    PS- Your statements and assumptions about “you” who “re-elected democrats” does nothing to advance political action by republicans, democrats, independents.

  15. Wow what a surprise. LOL! This was in the bag from the start, no matter how many people wrote letters or attended the meetings. That was a waste of time, the last election in Long Beach sealed its fate. Section8 by the Sea coming to Long Beach, Rockaways here we come.

  16. By who? Who is going to investigate anything going on in LB? Cuomo? The NYS attorney general? Some fellow on the old LB Patch was always posting that “investigations are underway”, what a laugh. Investigations are only for places in locales not politically aligned with Albany.

  17. Reading about this issue for the past month, I’ve come to the conclusion that the average person is afraid of change. I think psychologists call it status quo bias. I just can’t see how anyone could care whether the building is 110 feet tall or 170. Oh no. That building is too tall. Run for it.

    Also, the crazy person who thinks he’s living in the 1960s and his neighborhood is about to go all colored. Please move to idaho. We already have section 8 housing and I’d still rather live here than garden city. Long Beach is not Far Rockaway, or Baldwin for that matter. All the wealthy and middle class aren’t going to start moving tomorrow. I see more new construction than I do for sale signs. If anything, I think the area behind Waldbaums is ripe for gentrification.

    My house took 4 feet of water like everyone elses and I thought of leaving. But, LB is too awesome a place for me to go move to North Merrick. Its too unique and some stores off the boardwalk will be a welcome addition. Now, if someone wanted to build a 20 story building, that would be crazy.

  18. Long Beach is not Far Rockaway now. It WILL BE shortly. This building is going up, the next two sites on the list are the Hebrew Academy and the Laurelton empty parcel. There is no actual market demand for all these apartments at the rents being charged – so yes, they will be filled with subsidized housing. Bank on it, apartment owners love it because the government always pays the rent. And yes, alot of people are leaving LB and alot more who understand what is going on, who have lived in LB for decades and remember how this went down in the past with respect to nursing homes, want to get out while their homes are still worth something. There is a quiet exodus underway of people who know the score.

  19. 17 floors are ok but 20 are not? What about 18 and 19?
    Where does it end? It sets a precedent and changes the character of the City even before consideration of Section 8 issues in future buildings, which may or may not be valid.
    A few years back efforts were made to change the character of beachfront property in West End but they were successfully fought off . Not so much because of Section 8 potentialities but just that people don’t want large buildings all along the beachfront.
    I for one don’t want southeast Florida here or Ocean City ,Md. or Hutchinson Island, Fla.
    Sam is correct that those two parcels are ripe for the same types of Buildings .
    And there are many marginal buildings that can be demolished and the sites turned into more of these much taller buildings.
    Mention has been made that the new buildings will generate much needed tax revenue but won’t the City services also be increased? What about sewage facilities? Additional children in the schools, policing , etc? These all cost money.

  20. As a person who has looked for rentals as my home is being elevated and repaired, I can say that the rental market in LB is good for the landlords. The prices in the high rises are 2k and up without room for negotiation. I’ve looked into renting a whole house or half a house and have had lost out to other tenants that got there first. When I was out of college a lot of my friends rented in RVC because its one of the few places on Long Island with a lot of rental apartments. As a result, RVC has one of the best downtowns on Long Island. Long Beach has a nice downtown but 1,000 more young people would make it even better. However, if you hate that idea you can go live in suffolk where my sister has to drive 20 minutes to get chinese.

  21. JM — But for a handful of the same people talking on here or the Patch that mention section 8 and Rockaway or payoffs, most people I’ve spoken to over the last month (easily numbering more than 50 and possibly 100) have an aesthetic preference against 160 ft building(s) in their seaside community. That is not a psychological condition based on a fear of change. In addition to that aesthetic preference, many people have legitimate concerns about parking, traffic and congestion, infrastructure. And, as I explained in my letter to the ZBA, the City itself has established what the norms are. That you are OK with 160 foot or taller towers is fine with me. While I disagree with you that 160 feet is “OK” for our community, I do not think you have a psychological condition behind your choice.

    The worst part of this decision, to me, is not that we are getting 160 foot towers, but that the City did not treat this variance like the important change to the community that it is. The City government should have had special meetings and planning sessions and they could have taken a position on it and explained that position and answered questions And took feedback. I attended the City Council meeting for the approval of the settlement, I attended the single variance hearing with comments beginning at around 11pm. The lack of community involvement, the lack of gratuitous “dog and pony” show, to me, irrespective of the building heights and density, demonstrates one thing that is not a debatable point — the community’s view did not matter.

    Best, John Ashmead

  22. I personally think the towers are too big, but I don’t fear section 8 housing. Rentals are needed on the island. This is ocean front property. Long Beach is a unique community and not the Rockaways, which is large, confusing and gated. But yeah, those buildings are tall

  23. Anthony — those are not my fears and one of the reasons my family moved here FROM Garden City was the, for Long Island standards, racial, ethnic, social and economic diversity. We love the many, many friends we’ve made in Long Beach and that we live in a City. The politics — whether it is City government or BOE — not so much.

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