Jewish Home Lifecare, which is planning to build a 20-story nursing home at 97th Street between Amsterdam and Columbus, won a court ruling this week against neighbors and parents of children at PS 163 next door.
JHL runs the nursing home on 106th Street and has been planning to move it to the new parcel on 97th Street for several years, but a legal battle has kept those plans on ice. JHL, which owns several eldercare facilities, plans to call the building The Living Center. It is expected to have 414 beds, including 264 long-term-care beds and 150 post-acute (short-term rehabilitation) beds. The center will also have rooftop gardens, a library and training spaces.
This recent court case concerned the state’s environmental review of the project — parents and neighbors had said it failed to take into account the environmental risks from the project, which could harm the kids who play right next door. The appeals court, however, found the state’s review to be adequate.
“The State conducted an extensive and rigorous analysis while preparing its Environmental Impact Statement and subsequently required Jewish Home to take measures to mitigate potential construction impacts on P.S. 163, including several specific steps suggested by Jewish Home that go well beyond standard industry construction mitigations,” said Bruce Nathanson, Senior Vice President of The New Jewish Home (the official name of the JHL nonprofit), in a statement.
But another challenge remains. The litigants have also filed suit over the new building’s zoning, challenging the city’s Board of Standards and Appeals. That suit is being heard at the state supreme court’s appellate division. Martin Rosenblatt, PWV Working Group, said that
“We have a series of steps that we will be undertaking to insure that this ill conceived JHL project to construct a twenty story tower on a toxic site that is seriously injurious to our neighborhood, that includes the children at PS163, other young children not yet in school, seniors, pregnant women and people with compromised immune systems never takes place.
There is still another law suit that deals with the Bureau of Standards and Appeals that has yet to be ruled on by the Courts plus the follow up to any Court rulings.
In addition there are additional other measures going forward that we are undertaking that will be spelled out as we go forward!
We are hopeful and determined as ever at our success going forward to stop this project.”