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Barry Diller Accuses Douglas Durst Of Bankrolling Pier 55 Opposition


Barry Diller, the media mogul who's trying to finance the construction of a floating park on the Hudson River, has met resistance on the novel concept, and he thinks it's coming from one of the most powerful developers in the city.

The project, a JV with the Hudson River Park Trust, has been held up by several legal challenges. "The backer of all this,” Barry told the New York Times, “is one Douglas Durst.”

The challenges to Pier 55 have come from a civic group called The City Club of New York. Douglas demurred on the subject of his involvement, according to the Times, but acknowledges he's against the project and "in favor of the litigation." The lawsuit claims the Hudson River Trust didn't consider other developers for the $130M park, and alleges it would create environmental challenges, such as killing off local species.

In April, a Manhattan Supreme Court tossed out the club's lawsuit, citing a study that showed Pier 55 “would not cause significant adverse impacts on the aquatic habitat." The State Supreme Court’s Appellate Division is hearing the case this week. [NYT]