Willets West Case Oral Argument Set For April
Queens, NY – Senator Avella’s office has been advised that oral arguments for the appeal of the Willets West “mega-mall” case will be heard on April 25th by the Court of Appeals which will be sitting at the Westchester County Courthouse, 111 Dr. Martin Luther King Junior Boulevard in White Plains, at 12:00 PM.
The lawsuit filed by State Senator Tony Avella, City Club of New York, Queens Civic Congress, members of Willets Point United Inc., and nearby residents/business owners against the Willets West “mega-mall” proposal, challenged the give-away of 47 acres of Queens parkland worth an estimated $ 1 Billion to build the Willets West “mega-mall” adjacent to Citi Field.
The original suit sought a declaratory judgment to invalidate approvals already granted to the project, as well as a permanent injunction to prevent the construction of a megamall on City parkland without the proper State legislative authorization or proper zoning. In a unanimous decision in 2015, the appellate court granted injunctive relief and declared that the development can go no further without state legislative approval.
“I can only hope that the Court of Appeals will join in the sound reasoning of the Appellate Division in protecting parkland,” said Senator Avella when informed that oral arguments would take place in April.