35 Cooper Square Will Be Torn Down

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"Unfortunately, it was concluded that it would not be feasible to develop the site with the building or any significant portion of it remaining," wrote Stephen Lefkowitz on behalf of Arun Bhatia, developer of 35 Cooper Square, in a letter to city council member Rosie Mendez last Friday. Advocates for the 186-year-old building had remained hopeful until recently. But merely four days after the letter was released, 35 Cooper Square is officially starting to come down. Crew members started work on the upstairs scaffolding earlier today.

It's been a long few months as we've watched the action from across the street in Cooper Square. Shortly after advocates protested to try to save the historic East Village landmark, it was announced that demolition of the building had been approved by the DOB.

Bhatia has run into trouble through the course of the building's destruction, and has been issued four violations, including failure to safeguard property, performing work without a permit, and failure to post a permit.

It is unknown when exactly the building will be demolished or what Bhatia plans to build. However, rumors have circulated speculating that another hotel or dorm will replace 35 Cooper Square.

[atimm@villagevoice.com]



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