Stop the Rezoning of 4650 Broadway

Petitioning NYC Council Member Ydanis Rodriguez

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We, the undersigned, urge The New York City Planning Commission, The New York City Council, and His Honor, Mayor Bill DeBlasio, to reject Acadia Trust’s Application to up-zone 4650 Broadway (Sherman Plaza) and incorporate Mandatory Inclusionary Housing at that site:

  • This spot up-zoning is double the existing density and height of the majority of buildings in Inwood, and will create a dangerous precedent for the numerous other “underdeveloped,” “soft” sites in Inwood.
  • Spot up-zoning will destroy the cohesive fabric of the existing community by increasing property values, heating up the real estate market, and thereby encouraging displacement of current Inwood residents.
  • Spot up-zoning would ignore and degrade the experience of Scenic Landmark Ft. Tryon Park and the Cloisters Museum across Broadway.
  • The proposed redevelopment would destroy the historic Packard Building, designed by Albert Kahn, the “gateway to Inwood” on Broadway.
  • Existing infrastructure in Northern Manhattan is well past its useful life, and cannot accommodate such a large development. (Source: Con Ed Public Service Administration Hearing—Washington Heights/Inwood subsurface network for M29 transmission line.)
  • The developer failed to produce a full Environmental Assessment Statement (EAS), which might have addressed this issue.
  • The community board approval process did not incorporate the serious community concerns and unanimous disapproval of the project expressed by the neighborhood at the Town Hall held the night before the Community Board’s unannounced vote
  • The small number of “affordable” apartments this proposal adds to NYC’s housing stock is not worth the permanent losses this spot up-zoning would mean to our community, including the loss of existing affordable, rent stabilized housing by virtue of the displacement that will be caused by the large number of luxury units this project will force on Inwood.
  • Also, the percentage of affordable units has not actually been determined; it is now described as “in negotiation,” utilizing a process that has not been made public.

Spanish translation follows:

Nosotros, los abajo firmantes, instamos a la Comisión de la Planificación de la Ciudad de Nueva York, el Consejo Municipal y su honor, el alcalde Bill De Blasio, a rechazar la solicitud de Acadia Trust para cambiar la zonificación de 4650 Broadway (Sherman Plaza). Asimismo, les instamos a incorporar la norma de Vivienda de Inclusión Obligatoria en ese sitio:

  • Este cambio excepcional de zonifiación por un solo sitio (“spot zoning”) aumentaría en el doble la densidad y la altura comparado con la mayoría de los edificios existentes en Inwood y crearía un precedente peligroso para los numerosos otros sitios “subdesarrollados” o “blandos” en Inwood.
  • El “spot zoning” va a destruir el tejido de cohesión de la comunidad existente, mediante el aumento de los valores de propiedad y el sobre-calentamiento del mercado inmobiliario; y de este modo, fomentará el desplazamiento de los residentes actuales de Inwood.
  • El “spot zoning” ignora y degrada la experiencia de landmark escénica de Fort Tryon Park y el Museo Cloisters ubicados al frente.
  • El proyecto de remodelación destruiría el edificio histórico de Packard, diseñado por Albert Kahn, la “puerta de entrada a Inwood” por Broadway.
  • La infraestructura existente en el norte de Manhattan ha sobrepasado su vida útil y no da cabida a un gran desarrollo de este tipo. (Fuente: Con Ed Administración de Servicios Públicos—Audiencia de Washington Heights/Inwood, red subterránea para la línea de transmisión M29).
  • La empresa no produjo una Declaración de Evaluación Ambiental (EAS) completa, que podría haber abordado este asunto.
  • El proceso de aprobación del Consejo Comunitario (Community Board), no ha incorporado las graves preocupaciones de la comunidad y la desaprobación unánime del proyecto expresado por el barrio en el Ayuntamiento llevado a cabo la noche antes de la votación no anunciada del Consejo.
  • El pequeño número de apartamentos “asequibles” en esta propuesta, de ningún modo compensa las pérdidas permanentes de alquileres estabilizados que resultarían de este acto de “spot zoning” en nuestra comunidad, en virtud del desplazamiento causado por el gran número de unidades de lujo que este proyecto impondría en Inwood.
  • Además, el porcentaje de unidades asequibles del proyecto aún no ha sido determinado; actualmente, se describe como “en proceso de negociación”, a través de un proceso que no abierto al público.

This petition will be delivered to:

  • NYC Council Member Ydanis Rodriguez

Inwood, Manhattan

Inwood is located at the top of Manhattan Island, at the point where the Hudson and Harlem Rivers meet a the Spuyten Duyvil. The area is historically, architecturally and environmentally unique as almost half of the land is public park space that preserves the natural terrain and geological features of the island, as opposed to the designed landscapes of many parks in New York City. In 1906, the extension of the IRT transit lines to Dyckman Street resulted in the rapid development of six- and seven-story apartment houses on land purchased from farms and private estates. Today, Inwood remains characterized by early-20th- century apartment residences built in relation to the preserved landscape of its public parks to the west and south. An industrial area, serving the transportation, sanitation and utility infrastructure of New York City, occupies a large portion of its eastern edge.

To learn more about Inwood click here


5063–5067 Broadway;
Unknown architect;

Once the imposing entrance to the Seaman-Drake estate, the arch, which is said to be a scale model of the Arc de Triomphe in Paris, is 35 feet tall and 20 feet deep and made of locally quarried Inwood marble. John Ferris Seaman bought 25 acres in Inwood in 1851 and created the estate and a mansion, also constructed of marble. The mansion was replaced in 1938 by the Park Terrace Gardens apartments.


West 215th Street between Broadway and Park Terrace East;
Ca. 1911|

The NYC Department of Design and Construction completed a restoration of the West 215th stepped streets in a form sensitive to its original historic design. Of approximately 100 original historic cast-iron lampposts in NYC that survive, two composite column cast-iron lampposts remain on this stepped street today and are designated New York City landmarks.


Dedicated September 28, 1912
ca. late 1930s

In 1911, land for the purpose of a public park was offered as a gift to the city by Julia Isham Taylor. Newspaper accounts reveal that Mrs. Taylor’s gift was intended to preserve green space and views from her father‘s land—a central, natural high point in the area. A bit later, Julia’s aunt Flora bought and added land to the gift “just to preserve the view” to the Hudson River. The gifts of land from the Isham family are detailed on a bronze plaque in the stone wall surrounding a circular paved terrace situated above Broadway between 214th and Isham Streets.

Samuel Isham, Julia’s brother, is quoted in the New York Times on March 24, 1912: “My father . . . re-graded the whole hill from top to bottom, planted nearly all of the trees that now remain . . . .” So the enormous gingko tree still seen at the Broadway entrance just above Isham Street, the former entrance to the estate, may have been planted by William Isham in the late 1860s.

When roadway workers were removing a red sandstone mile marker, William Isham had it installed at the right side of his entrance gate on Broadway. Part of the road system of the Old Albany Post Road, the stone indicated the 12 mile distance to City Hall in Downtown Manhattan and can still be seen today, although the text once engraved on it no longer exists.


530 West 215th Street;
James W. O’Connor;

This brick-and-terra-cotta mansion was constructed in 1912 for William Hurst, his wife and their 10 children. Hurst was the president of the Stock Quotation Telegraph Company, which supplied stock ticker equipment to financial firms. After Hurst died in 1929, his mansion was converted to a convent. In 1946 the property became the Garrard School of the Academy of the Sacred Heart of Mary which closed in 1969. In 1974 the Northeast Conference of Seventh-Day Adventists bought the house and continues to occupy the adjacent, more recent building as the Northeastern Academy.

On the south side of Hurst House in Isham Park is a community garden named for Bruce Reynolds (1960–2001), a Port Authority police officer who lost his life on September 11, 2001 at the World Trade Center.


(at the time known as PARK TERRACE NORTH);
Benjamin F.V. Dreisler, 1933;
C.G. de Neergaard, 1934|

This series of detached two-story residences are built in the Tudor Revival or Cotswold Cottage style, set back from lot lines with front and rear yards and either separate or basement garages. They reference the aesthetic of a small Garden City suburban enclave found nowhere else in Manhattan.

91, 93, 95/97 PARK TERRACE WEST

A. H. Zacharius;

These houses, constructed as two-family residences with accompanying two-car garages, are unique examples of the Arts and Crafts style, built when the styles of Art Deco and Modernism were becoming popular. They were constructed as multi-family detached dwellings when larger six-story apartment houses were predominant in the area.


Including bleachers attributed to Aymar Embury II, ca. 1936–40;
Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, 1946–48;
December 1936|

Moses-era Art Deco elements appear throughout the park and its natural landscape, including concrete entrance-gate columns, bollards, flagpole bases, water fountains and painted-steel bridge railings. Re-opened as the Inwood Hill Park Urban Ecology Center in 1995 (popularly known as “The Nature Center”), the largest Art Deco structure in Inwood Hill Park was originally designed to be a boathouse. Today it is used for lectures and exhibitions about the area’s natural history. Also constructed during the Moses era is the single-span, steel arch bridge named to commemorate the voyage of Henry Hudson on his ship the Half Moon, which anchored near the site in 1609. The bridge is part of the Henry Hudson Parkway, placarded as New York State Route 9A.