Building resentment: Developers file plans to start work on Pier 6 towers despite ongoing court case

A likely ‘story’: Park tower will be a bit higher than expected
ODA Architecture

They’ve got some steely resolve.

The developers planning two towers for Pier 6 in Brooklyn Bridge Park filed paperwork earlier this month to start construction before a judge decides whether the high-rises can even be erected, prompting a local civic group that is fighting the project in court to demand that the builders be banned from acting until a ruling is made, because their work would sully the meadow in its most popular season.

“That activity will generate unbearable noise for neighbors and park visitors. It threatens to shut down the playgrounds and park areas at Pier 6, and adjacent sections of the park, during the height of visitor season,” said the court filing by Richard Ziegler, the Brooklyn Heights Association’s attorney.

Developers RAL Development Services and Oliver’s Realty Group notified the Heights Association last week that they will start building the towers at the foot of Atlantic Avenue on or after July 19, per a stipulation that requires them to give the civic group three weeks notice before commencing construction.

Ziegler and the lawyers for the green space and developers are expected to plead their final cases to Justice Lucy Billings in a July 18 court appearance, after which she will deliberate on a decision on whether the park is violating an agreement that says it will only build as much housing as is needed to sustain it.

More than 400 100-foot steel beams will be hammered 90 feet into the ground as part of the first phase of the project, according to the court filing.

The builders tested driving the piles for three days in May in preparation, and a resident of nearby condo building One Brooklyn Bridge Park measured the noise, which exceeded 100 decibels — far more than the 85 decibels that experts say can cause hearing loss.

Ziegler compared the racket that park-goers and residents will endure to that of the subway or a raucous concert.

“It will sound as if a particularly noisy subway train is taking 20 to 30 minutes to pass by, or a very loud rock concert is being held in 20 to 30 minute spurts from 7 am to 4 pm,” the filing said.

Reach reporter Lauren Gill at lgill@cnglocal.com or by calling (718) 260–2511. Follow her on Twitter @laurenk_gill