Mayor Bill de Blasio

affordable housing, gentrification, Inwood, New Developments, Policy

inwood rezoning, upper manhattan, bill de blasio, councilman ydanis rodriguea

Inwood Hill Park; Image: Dana via Flickr.

On Wednesday the City Council approved a rezoning plan for a 59-block section of Inwood, a neighbhorhood often referred to as the “last affordable neighborhood in Manhattan,” the New York Times reports. The plan was approved last week by the city’s zoning subcommittee and the Land Use Committee. The Inwood rezoning is part of Mayor Bill de Blasio’s plan to rezone neighborhoods across the city as part of the push to create and preserve 300,000 affordable housing units by his goal date of 2026. Inwood is the fifth neighborhood–including the also-controversial East New York and East Harlem–to be approved for rezoning under the plan.

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New Developments, Policy, Union Square

124 East 14th Street, union square, tech hub, GVHPS, preservationists

Rendering via NYCEDC

The New York City Council voted Wednesday to approve plans to build a new tech hub on city-owned land at 124 East 14th Street near Union Square. As Crain’s reported, last Thursday the building received the go-ahead from the zoning subcommittee that was reviewing the development of the 21-story building that supporters expect will be a resource for the “tech-for-good” community and provide jobs for lower-income workers. The project is being developed jointly by the city’s Economic Development Corp. and developer RAL Development Service; it is expected to open in 2020. The proposed tech center, which the mayor hopes will nurture budding entrepreneurs in the technology field and bring over 600 jobs to New Yorkers, is planned at the site of a P.C. Richard & Son store, in an area already filled with new developments with more on the way.

Not everyone is excited, however

Policy, Transportation

PressNYC, EDC ,economic development corporation, freight infrastructiure, job creation, freight

Aggregate barge on Newtown Creek. Photo Credit: Mitch Waxman via NYCEDC

Mayor Bill de Blasio and the city’s Economic Development Corporation (EDC) announced on Monday the launch of a plan for investing in updated transportation options for New York City businesses and dividing distribution among the five boroughs. Freight NYC is a $100 million plan to overhaul the city’s aging freight distribution systems through strategic investments to modernize maritime and rail assets and create new distribution facilities. The plan hopes to create 5,000 jobs as well as a more sustainable and resilient supply chain network.

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City Living, Policy

Photo via Dan Nguyen/Flickr

In the “it’s about time” department, the New York Post reports that Mayor Bill de Blasio is considering a tax that would discourage retail landlords from letting their properties sit vacant, depriving potential local businesses of opportunity while giving the middle finger to neighborhood morale. Addressing the rising number of vacant storefronts in just about every neighborhood in the city, the mayor said Friday on WNYC that he would like to see a penalty in place for landlords who leave storefronts sitting unoccupied, presumably waiting for big-ticket tenants who have yet to materialize.

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affordable housing, maps

In addition to upping the number of affordable housing units created or preserved in New York City, Mayor Bill de Blasio is pushing for greater transparency of his ambitious plan to bring 300,000 affordable units to the city by 2026. The Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD) launched an interactive map on Monday that displays all of the units, buildings, and projects that count towards the mayor’s Housing New York 2.0 plan (h/t Curbed NY). The counted units, with data starting with units from January 1, 2014 on and will be updated quarterly, are shown by the number of units and occupancy size.

See it here

New Developments, Policy, Union Square

124 East 14th Street, union square, tech hub, GVHPS, preservationists

Rendering via NYCEDC

In what may be shaping up to be one of New York City’s biggest preservation battles of the coming year, Mayor Bill de Blasio’s application Monday for a rezoning in order to move forward with a proposed tech hub at 124 East 14th Street in Union Square led neighborhood preservation and affordable housing groups to escalate cries of protest. Community organizations, including the Cooper Square Committee and the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation (GVSHP), restated the urgent need for assurance that rezoning would come with protections for the adjacent residential neighborhood. Preservationists fear the creation of a new “Silicon Alley” near Union Square will bring rent hikes and more condo and office towers. The proposed tech center, which the mayor hopes will nurture budding entrepreneurs in the technology field and bring over 600 jobs to New Yorkers, is planned at the site of a P.C. Richard & Son store, in an area already filled with new developments with more on the way.

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City Living, Policy

Jitterbug dancers via Wikipedia

Mayor Bill de Blasio today signed legislation that repealed the city’s 91-year-old Cabaret Law, making it legal to bust a move without getting busted in the city’s drinking and gathering establishments. Though it’s somewhat of a formality that’s arguably trivial, the law’s official demise represents an epic victory for decades of nightlife denizens. 6sqft previously reported on a petition started by the Dance Liberation Network and the NYC Artist Coalition calling for to repeal the onerous law with racist roots on the grounds that the law is out of place in a cultural Mecca like New York City.

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affordable housing, Policy

bill de blasio, housing new york 2.0, affordable housing

Image: Ed Reed/Mayoral Photography Office

Calling it “Housing New York 2.0,” Mayor Bill de Blasio has just released a new road map to his goal of building and preserving 300,000 affordable New York City homes–100,000 more than his previous pledge. The plan accelerates and expands the production of new housing, fights tenant displacement, creates more housing for seniors and working families and provides new home ownership tools. Among the more technologically advanced strategies outlined are plans to use innovative smaller homes on vacant lots that are too small for traditional housing and the expansion of modular buildings and micro-units.

Mitchell-Lama, vacant lots, modular building and micro-units, this way

affordable housing, Policy

mayor bill de blasio, affordable housing, mitchell-lama

Mayor Bill de Blasio announced Thursday that the city will invest $250 million to protect 15,000 Mitchell-Lama apartments from going to market rate. The investment is part of the city’s initiative to create or preserve 300,000 units of affordable housing by 2026. The new program will address over 15,000 Mitchell-Lama homes where affordability is at risk over the next eight years.

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Policy

Mayor Bill de Blasio announces findings on tenant representation last August. Image: nyc.gov

6sqft reported last year on a new bill that would guarantee a lawyer for all low-income residents facing eviction. On Friday, Mayor Bill de Blasio signed that bill into law, guaranteeing legal representation for low-income residents who face eviction (h/t Citylab). The legislation is the nation’s first that provides right to counsel in housing matters. The new law is the result of efforts of activists and organizers that began in 2014.

Find out more about the new law

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