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Friday, December 3, 2021

Mayor-Friendly Developers Meet Their Friends: Upper East Side Residents

Although the name “New York” appears in its name, the Blood Center has long expanded outside of the city and now operates in more than a dozen states, managing a collection of blood banks and laboratories mainly in the Northeast and Midwest. The center supplies about 80 percent of blood to New York City hospitals and reported more than $ 592 million in total revenue in 2019, including donations.

A major concession from the developers – reducing the building’s height to 233 feet from 334 feet, which would reduce some of the shadows – has caught the attention of some critics. The Blood Center also agreed to donate $ 3.6 million to nearby St. Catherine’s Park, which will also receive an additional $ 7 million from the city for upgrades. The center will also provide $ 2 million to the Julia Richman Education Complex, a public school across the street.

“Our vision for a modern life sciences center not only ensures that the non-profit Blood Center continues to provide safe and affordable blood services to hospitals in the region,” said Rob Purvis, executive director of the New York Blood Center. in a statement, “but allow the center to significantly expand its vital research on Covid-19 and blood-related diseases, in collaboration with institutions and biotechnology partners under one roof.”

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Rafael Salamanca, a Bronx councilor who rallied his colleagues in support of the project, said expanding the Blood Center is critical.

“I find it irresponsible to vote against this statement because you have a community that complains about shadows,” said Mr Salamanca. “I cannot knowingly vote against the sickle cell research project that stores the blood of New Yorkers.”

Gail Brewer, who, as president of the Manhattan borough, reviewed and disapproved of the proposal, said the decline in growth made her change her mind. Ms. Brewer, who has fought many battles against multi-storey developments during her tenure, said the fight has become extremely fierce.

“There was so much ugliness,” said Ms. Brewer, who won a city council seat in the November election. “They said they were rich, they always complain.”

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