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Stop the Presses! Brooklyn Heights Co-op Rejects Millions From a Condo Developer

Brooklyn Heights

No Vote
Jan. 18, 2016

In a vote that was closely watched in New York City real estate circles, the shareholders of the co-op at 75 Henry Street voted 191 to 112 against selling the co-op’s 387,000-square-foot commercial property on Pineapple Walk, where Anbau Enterprises was hoping to erect a 40-story luxury condo tower, as reported by The Brooklyn Daily Eagle. Anbau recently sweetened its original offer of $75 million to a stunning $130 million, an amount that would have provided a windfall in excess of $120,000 to every shareholder in the co-op.

The sale was opposed by many people in Brooklyn Heights, including the residents of nearby Cadman Towers and the Brooklyn Heights Association (BHA). They argued that another residential high-rise would over-tax the neighborhood’s already stretched schools, hospitals and transit. It also would have blocked many residents’ views, as previously reported by Habitat.

“Our co-op voted to keep the integrity of the neighborhood, and sensibility rules over greed,” said 75 Henry Street resident Beverly Closs. Her husband, Bill Closs, added that the no vote stemmed from “all the concerns about schools and the quality of life.” 

In a statement, the BHA said, “(We) commend the shareholders of 75 Henry Street for the courage of their convictions. The rejection of Anbau Enterprise’s $130 million offer…is a dramatic statement that some things, such as what it means to be part of a community, are truly priceless. They placed a higher value on preserving the integrity of their community than on the cash they would have received, and for that we are sincerely and deeply appreciative. Brooklyn Heights is fortunate to have them as neighbors.”

“I can’t begin to imagine how difficult this vote must have been for the residents of 75 Henry Street,” said Susan Raboy, a resident of nearby 10 Clinton St. “This area does not have the services to support yet another 40-story residential building. While they surely would have benefitted from the monetary offers, they voted no and by doing so preserved our community.”

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