GoldmanHarris LLC

GoldmanHarris LLC

GoldmanHarris LLC is a boutique law firm specializing in zoning and land use in the five Boroughs of New York City.

Firm Overview

Our clients include developers, lenders, owners, purchasers, tenants, law firms, architects, condo and coop boards, public authorities, community and civic groups and other parties involved in New York City land use.

GoldmanHarris offers a full range of legal services relating to land use, including zoning due diligence and analysis, transactional and litigation support, strategic advice, zoning opinions and letters, purchase and sale of development rights, and as-of-right and discretionary agency approvals. We practice before the New York City Planning Commission, Board of Standards and Appeals, Landmarks Preservation Commission, Department of Buildings, City Council and other City and State agencies and authorities.

GoldmanHarris offers its clients exceptional knowledge, experience and value. Partners Howard Goldman and Caroline G. Harris have a combined total of more than 55 years experience as land use attorneys in the City and maintain excellent reputations in the real estate, government and legal communities.

Main Office

Main Office
475 Park Avenue South, 28th Floor
New York NY 10016


(212) 935-1622


Office Information

Real Estate

The firm's practice is limited to zoning and land use, including but not limited to the following sub-areas

Zoning, Special Permits & Variances
-Zoning analyses, including zoning status, development potential, review of zoning calculations and drawings, and strategic advice
-Zoning opinions, memoranda and letters for sellers, purchasers, borrowers and lenders
-Transfers of development rights, preparation and review of Declarations, Zoning Lot Development Agreements, and related zoning documents
-Transactional support, including drafting and reviewing zoning related provisions of purchase and sale agreements and ground leases
-Representation and advocacy for projects requiring approval of the City Planning Commission, Community Boards, Borough President, and City Council, including authorizations, certifications, special permits, zoning district changes, text amendments, dispositions of city owned property, and other matters subject to New York City's Uniform Land Use Review Procedure (ULURP)
-Zoning-related matters involving other City and State agencies, including the Department of Housing Preservation and Development, Economic Development Corporation, the Empire State Development Corporation and other public authorities
-Representation and advocacy for projects before the Board of Standards and Appeals, including variances, special permits, vesting cases and administrative appeals
-Litigation support, including expert testimony and technical assistance on land use and zoning issues

Landmark Preservation
-Representation and advocacy for projects before the Landmarks Preservation Commission, including special permits, landmark designations, Certificates of Appropriateness and Certificates of No Effect
-Construction and Building Code Matters
-Review and advocacy relating to zoning issues before the Department of Buildings, including pre-considerations, reconsiderations, interpretations, permits and zoning challenges
-Representing property owners (condos, co-ops, landlords) or developers in conflicts with adjacent property owners

Sustainable Development
-Strategic advice regarding sustainable development initiatives
-Advocacy of renewable energy, green roof tax credits, and sustainable zoning initiatives

Howard J. Goldman

GoldmanHarris LLC

Howard Goldman began his career as a land use attorney in Alaska in 1976, where he drafted regulations for the Alaska Coastal Management Program, handled environmental review under NEPA and represented towns and municipalities in adopting zoning and land use controls.

In 1980, Mr. Goldman was appointed Deputy Counsel to the New York City Planning Commission. As Deputy Counsel, Mr. Goldman was involved in the review of applications and other matters before the City Planning Commission, the development of zoning amendments, including the Midtown Special District, and coordinating the City Environmental Quality Review (CEQR) program.

After City Planning, Mr. Goldman was a land use partner at the firms Patterson, Belknap, Webb & Tyler and Winthrop Stimson Putnam & Roberts. In 1999, he founded the Law Offices of Howard Goldman, PLLC.


State University of New York at Buffalo School of Law
Juris Doctorate,

Caroline G. Harris

GoldmanHarris LLC

Caroline Harris's practice is focused on land use law, emphasizing New York City zoning and historic preservation. She is an expert on development rights deals ("air rights"). She also has substantial transactional experience and serves as a Neutral Arbitrator on the Commercial Panel of the American Arbitration Association.

Ms. Harris began her zoning career in the public sector as Associate Counsel for the New York City Department of City Planning. As Associate Counsel, she was responsible for all legal matters relating to applications for re-zonings, urban renewal plan approvals, special permits, certifications, and authorizations. She also handled legal issues associated with complex special projects involving multiple city and state agencies, such as the 42nd Street Development Project. She regularly appears before the NYC Board of Standards and Appeals, City Planning Commission and Landmarks Preservation Commission.

After City Planning, Ms. Harris was associated with Stadtmauer Bailkin (now Akerman Senterfitt) and then Stroock, Stroock & Lavan. She also was Of Counsel at Troutman Sanders LLP. In 2008, she joined with Howard Goldman as his partner to form GoldmanHarris LLC.


University of Maryland School of Law
J.D., 1979

Trinity College
B.A., 1975

Ariel S. Holzer

GoldmanHarris LLC

Ariel Holzer gained his initial exposure to New York City Zoning and Administrative Law while serving as General Counsel for OTR Media Group, Inc. (a New York based outdoor advertising company). Following his stint at OTR Media Group, Inc., Mr. Holzer opened his own practice which included real estate transactions, business and litigation, as well as New York City zoning and Administrative Law.

Mr. Holzer began his career as a litigation associate for Goldberg Weprin & Ustin LLP (now Goldberg Weprin Finkel Goldstein LLP). As a litigation associate in a law firm specializing in real estate transactions, Mr. Holzer gained a comprehensive knowledge of the conflicts which can arise in developing real estate in New York City.

After Goldberg Weprin & Ustin LLP, Mr. Holzer was associated as a real estate transactional attorney at Sukenik, Segal & Graff, P.C., where he attained a broad knowledge of such transactions, while representing large-scale developers in all real estate related dispositions.


Fordham University School of Law
J.D., 2005

Talmudic University of Florida
B.A., 2002