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Protesters Rally Against Proposed Construction Of 2 High-Rises In Harlem

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) -- A plan for two new high-rise buildings in central Harlem is dividing the neighborhood. Residents took to the streets Monday night to protest the project.

A quiet, vacant lot is creating a lot of noise in Harlem, and it's all because of a proposed development that would bring two high-rise apartment buildings and a civil rights museum to Lenox Avenue and 145th Street, taking up most of the block.

"It's impossible most of the time to find a parking space," area resident Millicent Redick said.

And space for pedestrians is also what Redick is worried about.

The 53-year Harlem resident was among close to 50 neighbors protesting the project on Monday night.

"If we have a game at the Yankee Stadium, it's becomes even more challenging trying to get through the community. The congestion is my biggest concern," Redick said.

Councilmember Kristin Richardson Jordan spent her first Monday as an elected official rallying with the group. She told CBS2 stopping the displacement of long-time Harlem residents is important, and she is concerned some are being persuaded to think the development is a good idea.

"When there are new developments, there's often a carrot, there's often a bread crumb or a carrot dangled in front of us. It's incredibly insulting, but the bigger picture is that this is a whole bunch of market rate housing masquerading as somehow being for the community and it's not," Jordan said.

That museum focusing on Black history will sit on the same property in which the The Rev. Al Sharpton's organization will be headquartered.

While both will be in the middle of two 360-foot tall apartment buildings that would offer affordable housing, neighbors said it would be useless to those currently here making the median income, $49,000.

"So I'm concerned even as a young person that years from now I will not be able to live in the same community that I grew up in because it's too expensive," neighbor Brianna McClure said.

CBS2 contacted the developers of One45 and Sharpton's organization, the National Action Network, for comment, but did not immediately hear back.

The community board votes Wednesday on whether to recommend approval for rezoning. If approved, the project would move closer to being completed in 2026.

To review the One45 development proposal in its entirety, click here.

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