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Mitsui Fudosan JV's NYC tower project faces another hurdle

Japanese property company Mitsui Fudosan Co. Ltd. and U.S. developer SJP Properties' condominium tower project at 200 Amsterdam Ave. on Manhattan, N.Y.'s Upper West Side faces a new hurdle after the state Supreme Court overruled an earlier decision by the city's Board of Standards and Appeals that allowed the project to move forward, Crain's New York Business reported.

In July 2018, the city board had dismissed an environmental committee's challenge against the planned tower that is slated to be the tallest on the Upper West Side.

According to the publication, the state court has ordered the city board to "re-evaluate the tower using a protocol that appears to disallow the method that the developers used to justify its extraordinary size."

The plaintiffs were the Municipal Art Society and the Committee for Environmentally Sound Development.

Citing an unnamed source, the publication added that the developers are likely to appeal the decision.

Crain's noted that it was not immediately clear if the decision would effectively scrap the development. The project had faced opposition for the unusual manner in which its air rights were amassed, allowing a roughly 670-foot tall development on a relatively small parcel.

The plaintiffs are seeking to cut down the project from its planned 51 stories to roughly 17 stories, the publication added, citing Richard Emery, the attorney for the plaintiffs.

An SJP spokesman said the project's development team has followed the law completely, according to the March 14 report.

Work at the project had also been halted in 2017 due to challenges from neighborhood groups.