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Controversial One45 Project Plan In Harlem Withdrawn By Developers

The corner of 145th Street and Lenox Avenue, where the One45 housing project was proposed.

The developers behind plans to build an enormous, two-tower residential building in Harlem have withdrawn their application for the rezoning they needed to make the project a reality.

Developers led by Bruce Teitelbaum wanted to build a 917-unit building on the corner of West 145th Street and Lenox Avenue — and had revised their plans to include 458 affordable apartments after political pushback — but they didn't do enough to win a crucial vote.

New York City Council Member Kristin Richardson Jordan represents the district where the project is based and has opposed it since taking office. She responded to the developers' latest affordability concession over the weekend by saying she still couldn't support the project, dubbed One45. Tuesday, the developers withdrew their application, effectively killing the project for the time being, The Real Deal reports.

The revised plan was to build 112 units for those earning 30% of the area median income, 255 for those at 50% of AMI and 91 at 125% of AMI. Jordan took exception to the level of affordability and the fact that a racial impact study hadn't been undertaken.

Real estate players have been watching with interest as to the outcome of the application, with some considering it a bellwether case regarding how the new council will view development in the city.

Development approvals typically are approved based on what’s known as “member deference” — meaning the council will vote with the local member, largely ensuring the end of a development if it doesn't win that member's backing. Jordan's lack of support ultimately killed the project.

It is not the only project that newly elected members have railed against this year, but some have had a different outcome.

The developers of two buildings at 870 Atlantic Ave. and 1034 Atlantic Ave. had been stalled as they awaited rezoning approval from the city council, specifically Council Member Crystal Hudson, who was newly elected to represent the 35th District. 

Hudson greenlighted the projects last month after developers EMP Capital and Y&T Development agreed to increase the percentage of affordable units above the required minimum inclusionary zoning.

"In New York, the real estate industry has created a false choice for communities: allow developers to solve the housing and affordability crisis by operating undeterred or risk stifling development by ‘burdening’ developers with affordability quotas and community demands," Hudson's spokesperson, Alejandro Gonzalez, told Bisnow in an email in April. "The truth is, developers can stand to give more."