The result will be higher, bulkier, out-of-character new buildings that do not adhere to the streetwall, undermining the neighborhood’s human scale and unique sense of place.
|Extell’s Ariel Towers, under construction in 2007, triggered community action to ensure sound, contextual development.
Jacob Silberberg for The New York Times (June 17, 2007)
The City claims that zoning amendments are needed in the name of architectural quality, affordable housing, senior living, and other laudable goals. The problem is, this proposal ensures none of these aims. It is a massive give-away to developers
who have been trying to overturn our city’s hard-won zoning and historic district protections for decades.
The contextual zoning and landmark designations that guide this neighborhood’s growth and change (and the neighborhood has grown and changed) were thoughtfully designed and democratically adopted policies intended to fairly balance the maintenance of this neighborhood’s charms with the real needs for added development.
~ Elliott Sclar
(now director of Center for Sustainable Urban Development, The Earth Institute, Columbia University), letter dated January 10, 2003
Big-money real-estate interests are eager to see the rules change. We need to work together to make sure that doesn’t happen. The new citywide rezoning proposal is entering the public review process. In the next few weeks and months, local Community Boards, Borough Presidents, the City Planning Commission, and the City Council will hold public hearings and vote on the plan. As each new hearing date is announced, will will tell you where it is and when to be there.
Public « Scoping » Hearing
Wednesday, March 25, 4:00pm
City Planning Commission
22 Reade Street
(a few blocks from City Hall, click here for a map)
Here’s what you can do right now:
Write to the Department of City Planning!
Call for the environmental review for the rezoning plan to be expanded to ensure height limits can be maintained and impacts on historic resources, neighborhood character, and quality of life are taken into account.
Write to your City Council Member, Community Board, and Borough President Gale Brewer (contact info below).
Here is a sample:
I support efforts to defend the current and future contextual neighborhood zoning protections from being weakened by allowing height limits within these protected areas to be raised by 20-30%. The proposed citywide rezoning plan would overturn communities’ hard-won zoning and historic district protections in one fell swoop. The result would be higher, out-of-character new buildings that undermine individual neighborhoods’ human scale and unique sense of place. This is not the way to ensure affordability, architectural quality, and quality of life in our city.
Hon. Gale Brewer, Manhattan Borough President
Hon. Helen Rosenthal, City Council District 6
District Office Phone: (212) 873-0282
Hon. Mark Levine, City Council District 7
District Office Phone: (212) 928-6814
Manhattan Community Board 7
Phone: (212) 362-4008
For more information about City Council districts, please click here
; or about Community Boards, click here
This is an issue that affects us all!
If you have any further questions, contact us at:
45 WEST 67 STREET
NEW YORK, NY 10023