Dear Albany Legislators:

    As voters and taxpayers of New York State, we urge you to take positive action to stop the Governor’s plan to declare the area around Penn Station “blighted” and impose ten new skyscrapers around New York City’s Penn Station neighborhood. The project - called the Empire Station Complex - merely grants Vornado the right to break the zoning code and build to excessive height with unneeded supertalls. Vornado is one of the country’s largest real estate investment trusts and was former Governor Cuomo's single largest donor.

    We don’t want you to make a “compromise” deal with either Vornado, Governor Hochul or the Empire State Development Corporation. We want the project stopped cold. Here’s why:

    1. None of the activities of the project benefits the public good. The project really only enriches Vornado who has taken to calling the area “the Vornado campus”.
    2. As documented in the environmental impact statement, the project will:
      1. Evict hundreds of residents now in affordable housing,
      2. Displace hundreds of small businesses in the area and thousands of small business employees,
      3. Demolish many beautiful historic buildings in the area, such as the Church of St. John the Baptist, the Gimbels building with its skybridge, the old Penn Station service building by McKim, Mead and White, and the Hotels Pennsylvania and Stewart.
    3. The financing of the project is entirely speculative and unsubstantiated, leading to undue burdens on New York’s taxpayers as well as the granting of excessive subsidies to Vornado. The result will be a new kind of unwanted blight, like that of Hudson Yards.
    4. The project puts lipstick-on-the pig rather than substantively addressing any of the issues of the miserable and deteriorating Penn Station.
    5. The project neglects to consider the cheaper and better alternative of making Penn Station the center of a regional unified train network with a new Penn Station above-ground.

    Stop the project.

    The Undersigned