David S. Steinmetz

(914) 682-7800

David is a passionate leader whose vision continues to shape the firm’s reputation for success in some of the most consequential cases and development projects in the region. He has cultivated a practice over decades advocating for his clients in land use, zoning, environmental, litigation, and real estate matters.

Representing developers and other clients on a wide variety of projects throughout the New York Metro area, David has secured approvals for residential subdivisions, multi-family buildings, senior living facilities, and shopping centers as well as commercial, industrial, mixed-use projects, and adapted re-use. His zoning and environmental work also involves conducting complex due diligence, drafting legislation, ensuring SEQRA compliance, and securing a multitude of entitlements and municipal permits.

A highly regarded public speaker and zealous advocate, David leads development teams throughout the region and argues cases before State and Federal Courts of all levels throughout New York State – including the New York State Court of Appeals, the State’s highest court. David’s transactional experience includes negotiating and/or closing complex real property transactions, including acquisitions, construction financing, PILOT Agreements, and IDA tax benefit transactions. David has served as an expert in two complex land development litigations.

Honored four times as one of the top 25 attorneys in Westchester County and selected annually for the list of New York Metro SuperLawyers since 2015, David is proud to have an “AV” rating from Martindale and Hubbell. David also takes pride in his community involvement – he was twice elected to the Yorktown Central School District’s Board of Education, selected as a member of the Yorktown Athletic Recreational Commission, served as a Trustee for a nonprofit organization that provides rehabilitation, residential, and vocational assistance to individuals with developmental disabilities; and he chaired or anchored various committees at three different country clubs. Recently, David was asked to chair a special task force in Westchester County to focus on addressing the pressing housing crisis in New York State.

Prior to forming Zarin & Steinmetz in 1997, David was a partner at a leading Westchester County real estate and land development law firm. He began his legal career as an associate at the New York City office of Kaye, Scholer, Fierman, Hays & Handler in its Litigation Department.

David received his Juris Doctor, cum laude, from American University, Washington College of Law in 1985, where he received the International Academy of Trial Lawyers Advocacy Award. He also received a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and Philosophy from the State University of New York at Binghamton in 1982.


American University, Washington College of Law, J.D., cum laude

State University of New York at Binghamton, B.A in Political Science & Philosophy


New York

District of Columbia

United States Court of Appeals, Second Circuit

United States District Court, Southern District of New York


Top 25 Attorneys in Westchester County, 2020, 2021, 2023 and 2024

New York Metro SuperLawyers for Land Use & Zoning, 2015-present

International Academy of Trial Lawyers Advocacy Award, 1985

Notable Work

  • Counseled a private developer on a high-profile adaptive reuse project in downtown White Plains that transformed a 15-story, concrete industrial/office building into a residential, mixed-use development with a parking garage.
  • Represented several different private senior living developers in securing land use, zoning relief and environmental permits for 150+/- unit communities in Harrison, Greenburgh, Tarrytown and Mount Pleasant. This included counseling one of the developers on managing intense community opposition and successfully defending its right to develop the land when the Town planning board’s approval was scrutinized in a litigation that ended up on appeal at the Second Department of the New York Supreme Court.
  • Represented a large international, publicly traded real estate developer on multiple aspects of two large-scale, mixed-use development projects in the City of Yonkers. This included advising on securing the appropriate land use approvals, closing the bank construction financing, and securing millions of dollars in tax savings through the implementation of IDA benefits, including mortgage and sale tax exemptions, as well as payments in lieu of taxes (PILOTS).

Our Attorneys work across multiple practice areas

Insights (Speaking Engagements & Publications)


  • Solving the Housing Crisis in New York State, Westchester County Association
  • Zoning and Land Use Seminar, Pace Law School and Hofstra Law School
  • Land Use Approval Process – A Reality Check, New York State Bar Association – Real Property Section, Summer Meeting
  • Subdividing Real Property: Legal, Practical and Technical Issues in New York, Lorman Education Services
  • The Risks and Benefits of Eminent Domain, Urban Land Institute
  • Current Developments in Zoning and Eminent Domain, Hudson Valley Appraisal Association
  • The Use of Eminent Domain in Public-Private Development Partnerships, Lorman Education Services
  • Land Use Training Institute – Special Permits and Variances, Westchester Municipal Planning Federation
  • Real Estate and Environmental Matters Affecting Matrimonial Practitioners, Practicing Law Institute
  • Licensing Course, Westchester County Board of Realtors


  • “Chipping Away At New York’s Housing Crisis: Revisiting Legislative Discretion For Rezonings,” N.Y. Bar Association Journal (August 2022)
  • “From Euclid to Darwin: The Unavoidable Evolution of Zoning in the Post-COVID 19 World,” N.Y. Bar Assoc. (Journal, Vol. 92, No. 8, November 2020)
  • “Clarifying the Standard of Judicial Review in Land Use Matters: Has the Second Department Pushed the Pendulum Back to the Middle?,” 12 N.Y. Zoning L. & Prac. Rep. 4 (2012)

Community Involvement

Greater Westchester

  • Westchester County Association, Chair, Special Real Property Task Force on NY State Housing  Crisis
  • Trustee, Ability Beyond
  • Legal Committee, Polo Club of Boca Raton and
  • Chair Legal Committee, Elmwood Country Club
  • Vice-President and Board Member, Yorktown Central School District
  • Commissioner, Yorktown Athletic Commission



  • New York Bar Association – Local & State Government Law Section; Environmental & Energy Law Section
  • Westchester County Bar Association – Municipal Law Section