Photo of Governors Island via simplethrill on Flickr
The city has launched the public review process for rezoning Governors Island, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced on Friday. A notice announcing the first public hearing for the plan was posted by the city, a critical part of the environmental review process (h/t Crain’s). The rezoning would create 4.5 million square feet of commercial, academic and cultural development, part of an endeavor to turn the 172-acre island into a 24/7 community.
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Photo via via Alexandra Ferguson
The city released on Monday a plan to preserve at least 300,000 square feet of production space in the Garment District for the fashion industry by providing tax breaks for owners who lease manufacturing space. While the district, bound by 35th and 40th Streets and Broadway and Ninth Avenue, was once home to hundreds of thousands of fashion jobs, it has lost 85 percent of firms in the last three decades.
In addition to the tax incentives, the plan creates a new zoning rule that would help limit the construction of hotels by introducing a special permit. The Garment Center IDA program, backed by City Hall, the city’s Economic Development Corporation, Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer and industry leaders, also includes lifting previous protections from a 1987 mandate that preserves millions of square feet of apparel-production space on certain side streets. According to the Wall Street Journal, if the plan is approved by the city council, owners would be allowed to convert buildings to other uses, like offices.
Rendering of the Peninsula by BLA + WXY
The New York City Council on Thursday unanimously approved the rezoning of 92-blocks along Jerome Avenue in the Bronx, bounded by East 165th Street to the south and 184th Street to the north. As the fourth neighborhood rezoning of Mayor Bill de Blasio’s administration, the city plans to construct about 4,600 new apartments, adding to the mayor’s goal of bringing 300,000 units of housing to the city by 2026. The council has set aside $189 million in capital investment for workforce development, open space, parks and two new schools (h/t City Limits). A plan to bring even more affordable housing to the Bronx got the green light on Thursday after the Council approved The Peninsula, a $300 million plan to redevelop the former Spofford Juvenile Detention Center as a mixed-use development.
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Photo courtesy of Industry City
The public review process for the rezoning of Industry City begins Tuesday, an effort to boost total capital investment of the sprawling campus to $1 billion and generate 13,000 on-site jobs and 7,000 off-site jobs over the next decade. Currently, Industry City sits on 35 acres with 16 buildings in its waterfront Brooklyn neighborhood of Sunset Park. The rezoning would restore the century-old campus and increase total usable square footage from 5.3 million to 6.6 million square feet. After presenting plans to the City Planning Commission and creating an environmental statement, the project will then enter the Uniform Land Use Review Procedure (ULURP) this Spring, followed by the public review process.
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Terry Tynes via flickr (CC)
As a small oasis in the center of Manhattan, Greenacre Park is home to honey locust trees, azaleas, pansies and a 25-foot-high waterfall, all taking up just 6,360 square feet of space. However, the city’s plan to rezone Midtown East to allow for more commercial buildings worries some advocates who say it may deplete Greenacre Park from any sunlight, as the Times reported. But the Municipal Art Society, New Yorkers for Parks, Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer and Councilmember Daniel Garodnick, are backing a campaign called “Fight For Light” to protect the park’s right to sunlight.
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At a Manhattan community board meeting Wednesday evening, city officials told garment industry representatives of plans to remove Midtown‘s manufacturing preservation requirement, Crain’s reports. The change to a 1987 zoning rule means that landlords will have the option to rent the formerly set-aside space to commercial office tenants. City officials cited the failure of the preservation effort to meet its goal, highlighted by a reported 83 percent decline the number of garment workers–from 30,000 to 5,100– since it was first implemented. As 6sqft recently reported, the rezoning is seen as “a clear push to drive these businesses toward lower cost space in Sunset Park.”
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In October, city officials unveiled plans to rezone a large swath of East Harlem. The major thrust of the rezoning initiative is to bring more high-rise buildings to a corridor running several blocks along Park, Second, and Third avenues. By building up, city officials hope the neighborhood will increase its housing stock, including its affordable housing stock. In the long term, the proposed rezoning will also radically reshape the East Harlem’s appearance and street life, turning it from a mostly low-rise to high-rise neighborhood. What is about to happen to East Harlem, however, is a familiar story. Since 1916, when New York passed its first zoning resolution, the city has been profoundly shaped by zoning regulations.
MORE ON THE HISTORY OF ZONING AT CITYREALTY…
This time last year, Mayor de Blasio put forth his controversial rezoning proposal, part of his plan to preserve and/or create 200,000 units of affordable housing by 2024. It’ll now come to fruition, as DNAinfo reports that the City Council has approved the rezoning. “It includes Zoning for Quality and Affordability, a push to raise building heights and lift parking requirements in order to facilitate the construction of more affordable and senior housing, and Mandatory Inclusionary Housing, which will rezone certain neighborhoods and require affordable units in some new construction,” they explain. But not everyone is happy about the largest zoning overhaul since 1961. In fact, the City Council hearing was full of protestors, many of whom feel this will take away long-fought-for height limits that keep neighborhoods in scale. Which side are you on?
Map of proposed rezoning via Department of City Planning
The New York City Planning Commission voted 12-1 in approval of Mayor de Blasio’s controversial rezoning plan for East New York, Gothamist reports. It’s the first of 15 low-income neighborhoods scheduled for rezoning as part of the Mayor’s affordable housing plan, which promises to create or preserve 200,000 units of affordable housing. The City Council is scheduled to vote on the rezoning this spring.
As part of what is known as Mandatory Inclusionary Housing (MIH), rezoning plans for East New York’s Cypress Hills neighborhood and adjacent Ocean Hill in Bed-Stuy would have 7,000 new apartments built by 2030, 3,447 of which will be designated affordable, in addition to one million square feet of commercial space. Of those affordable units, 80 percent would be reserved for families (defined as a household of three, with any number of earners) making no more than 60 percent of the Area Median Income (AMI), or $46,000; 27 percent would go to families making 40 percent of the AMI or $31,000.
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Carter Uncut brings New York City’s breaking development news under the critical eye of resident architecture critic Carter B. Horsley. This week Carter brings us the second installment of nine-part series, “Skyline Wars,” which examines the explosive and unprecedented supertall phenomenon that is transforming the city’s silhouette. In this post Carter zooms in on Midtown East and the design of One Vanderbilt, the controversial tower that is being pinned as the catalyst for change in an area that has fallen behind in recent decades.
Despite some objections from community boards and local politicians, New York City is moving ahead with the rezoning of East Midtown between Fifth and Third avenues, and 39th and 59th Streets; and earlier this year, the de Blasio administration enacted an important part of the plan, a rezoning of the Vanderbilt Avenue corridor just to the west of Grand Central Terminal. The Vanderbilt Avenue rezoning included approval of a 1,501-foot-high tower at 1 Vanderbilt Avenue on the block bounded by Madison Avenue, 42nd and 43rd Streets. The tapered, glass-clad tower, topped by a spire, is being designed by Kohn Pedersen Fox for SL Green. Mayors Bloomberg and de Blasio have championed the 1 Vanderbilt proposal despite serious concerns voiced by numerous civic organizations over the rezoning scheme that some see as “spot zoning” and the fact that the city has still not finalized nor published its complete rezoning package.
Using air-rights transfers from the Grand Central Terminal area and zoning bonuses for providing $210 million for infrastructure improvements in the area, the tower will significantly alter the midtown skyline, rising several hundred feet above the nearby Chrysler Building and the huge and bulky but lower MetLife Tower straddling Park Avenue just north of Grand Central Terminal. Its 63 stories are several less than the Chrysler Building and just a few more than the MetLife Tower, which might be interpreted by some observers as indicated that it was in “context” with such prominent neighbors, but they are wrong.