Deadline extended on Whitestone development deed restriction

Photo courtesy of Cushman and Wakefield

Developers of Waterpointe—an 18-acre waterfront site in Whitestone where 52 single-family homes are to be built—have yet to deliver on promises of a deed restriction ensuring that the scale of development does not increase.

Members of the Community Board 7 Zoning Committee had previously recommended the renewal of the project’s special permit on the condition that the deed include a restriction that no more than 52 homes could be built on the 18-acre site by current owners, the Edgestone group, or any future entities that might buy the property.

Although the committee set a deadline of Oct. 19 so the project could be presented to the public in that night’s CB 7 meeting, Edgestone representatives instead on Monday handed in a notarized letter of intent promising that the deed restriction would follow shortly thereafter.

The deed restriction process was hindered by a quirk of the Waterpointe site ownership, according to Zoning Committee Chair Joe Sweeney.

Although Edgestone owns about 90 percent of the site, a road on the property is actually under the ownership of New York City. Sweeney said the committee will allow the deed restriction to cover only the parts of Waterpointe owned by prospective developers, and tabled the final vote on renewing the special permit until the next CB 7 meeting.

“The committee is hoping that they will meet our timeline for the next public hearing on Nov. 9,” Sweeney said. “If not, we’re going to proceed with downzoning the property so that this is finalized in order to protect the community from the negative impact of overdeveloping this particular site.”

According to Waterpointe architect Joseph Sultana, Edgestone president Gavin Feng is currently working with the company’s lawyers on the legal process of obtaining the deed restriction. He was unwilling to speculate on whether the deed restriction would be in place by the new deadline for public presentation.

“I’ve done all I can do,” Sultana said. “It’s out of my hands.”

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