New York City Mayor de Blasio Vows to Ban Glass and Steel Skyscrapers

Published June 19, 2019

New York City’s iconic and historic glass and steel skyscrapers have no place in the city under Mayor Bill de Blasio’s Green New Deal, unless they undergo extensive and expensive retrofitting

De Blasio announced a policy to ban new steel and glass buildings in the city during an April 22 appearance on MSNBC’s Morning Joe.

Moreover, all business owners who don’t retrofit their buildings to be energy efficient by 2030 will face fines up to $1 million.

The mayor also said the city government plans to be powered by 100 percent renewable energy sources in the next five years.

Fining Building Owners, Banning Glass and Steel

De Blasio says the glass and steel skyscraper ban is necessary in order to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

“We are actually making the Green New Deal come alive here in New York City,” de Blasio said on Morning Joe on April 22. “[T]he biggest source of emissions in New York City is buildings.

“We are putting clear, strong mandates,” said de Blasio. “The first of any major city on the Earth to say to building owners, ‘you got to clean up your act, you got to retrofit, you got to save energy.’ If you don’t do it by 2030 there will be serious fines, as high as $1 million or more for the biggest buildings.”

It will be much harder if not impossible to build new glass and steel skyscrapers in New York City in the future if de Blasio has his way.

“We’re going to ban the classic glass and steel skyscrapers, which are incredibly inefficient,” said de Blasio. “If someone wants to build one of those things they can take a whole lot of steps to make it energy efficient, but we’re not going to allow what we used to see in the past.”

‘Rocks in His Head’

Columnist Steve Cuozzo wrote in the New York Post de Blasio “must have rocks in his head,” to propose banning steel and glass for buildings in New York City.

“The five boroughs already suffer from the most expensive construction costs in the world,” wrote Cuozzo in an April 22 article, responding to de Blasio’s Green New Deal. “Office buildings cost $575 per square foot compared to $468 in London and half of that most everywhere else, according to the New York Building Congress.”

“[de Blasio’s plan would] … pile on another $100 or more per square foot to make them completely unaffordable to build, just to reduce carbon emissions that already don’t add up to beans.”

Unconnected Climate Hypocrite

Cuozzo indicated de Blasio is a hypocrite who hates the city he is the mayor of.

“Has any officeholder ever turned so viciously on his own town?,” asks Cuozzo. “De Blasio’s poisonous City Hall reign is distinguished by corruption, laziness, and incompetence — but not by rank stupidity. Until today.

“De Blasio knows nothing about New York City because he has no love for it,” write Cuozzo. “Unlike his every predecessor, he doesn’t go to museums, concerts or restaurants. His gas-guzzling van ride between Gracie Mansion and his Brooklyn gym is the extent of his immersion in Big Apple life.”

During his Earth Day appearance on Morning Joe, de Blasio shrugged off claims he is climate hypocrite for being driven 12 miles daily to his favorite Brooklyn gym in a heavy SUV with low fuel economy,.

“Let’s make clear, this is just a part of my life,” de Blasio said. “I come from that neighborhood in Brooklyn.

“That’s my home,” said de Blasio. “I go there on a regular basis to stay connected to where I come from and not be in a bubble that I think for a lot of politicians is a huge problem.”

Kenneth Artz ([email protected]) writes from Dallas, Texas.