Ritu Saheb, Architect, AIA's blog about New York architecture

Architecture.Simplified

The truth about Essex Crossing on the lower east side

  Blue,  the dynamic architecture of  Lower East Side . Photo by Ritu Saheb, Architect, AIA

Blue, the dynamic architecture of Lower East Side. Photo by Ritu Saheb, Architect, AIA

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  Saint Mary Church  on Grand Street. Photo by  Ritu Saheb, Architect, AIA
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 Future home of Trader Joe's under construction. Photo by  Ritu Saheb, Architect, AIA

Future home of Trader Joe's under construction. Photo by Ritu Saheb, Architect, AIA

By Ritu Saheb, Architect, AIA

Essex Crossing is a long-overdue mixed use development on the Lower East Side in Manhattan, New York. Coincidentally, I live down the street from it, and am happy to share my close perspective with you.

Essex Crossing is a 2 million square feet development, with a 60-40 mix (commercial-residential). It will have 1000 apartments, half of them are supposedly 'affordable' (as per the complex and rigged New York city housing standards).

Is this undertaking really as impressive as it seems?

The price tag for this development is $1.1 billion? Pray, how much of this is inflated due to regulatory requirements? AND, how much is being paid by the tax payers?

Mayor DeBlasio's budget has increased by over $10 billion since 2012. How much of it is going towards Essex Crossings? How much of it is being paid by an average New Yorkers (renters as well apartment owners) in the form of inflated property taxes?

The buildings promise to be visually pleasing, and in harmony with the neighborhood. However, are those the only standards these buildings should be judged by?

These lots sat vacant for over 60 years!

In private development, that is a huge loss of revenue. If we build this fact in the current economic equation, how much are we (the taxpayers) losing in Essex Crossings?

We have not even touched upon the forcible acquisition of property via Eminent Domain

Let's save that juicy bit for the next blog.