As promised, a coalition of Brooklyn community groups filed a lawsuit against the city yesterday over plans to turn a 31-acre area zoned for manufacturing on the border of Williamsburg and Bed-Stuy into 1,895 low-rise apartments—905 of which would charge below-market rate rents. Opponents say the housing complex would be racially and religiously discriminatory because it features too many three- and four-bedroom apartments, which would "disproportionately accommodate the Hasidic community's large families." Critics also want the buildings to be much taller, and accuse the Buildings Department of capping them at eight stories to accommodate Orthodox Jews who can't ride elevators on Shabbos. A lawyer for the Broadway Triangle Community Coalition tells the Daily News, "This process was dramatically racial. It acquiesces to the needs of the Hasidic community." But Councilman David Yassky, a supporter of the development plan, dismisses the allegations, explaining, "I want more housing, but I don't want skyscrapers in the middle of Brooklyn." The City Council will vote on the plan after the City Planning Commission casts their vote, and like other big projects, the use of eminent domain is becoming another heated issue.
Racism Charged in Broadway Triangle Development
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