Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Concern over the city's rezoning proposals, and 5 EV developments without affordable housing

[EVG file photo of The Nathaniel]

The de Blasio administration's rezoning proposals Zoning for Quality and Affordability (ZQA) and Mandatory Inclusionary Housing have been making the rounds at the Community Board level.

The proposals have, to date, reportedly concerned some neighborhood politicians, housing activists and preservation groups.

Now the plans go before City Council tomorrow (Wednesday!) for final review.

Here's more on how these proposals could impact the East Village in the opinion of The Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation (GVSHP):

Under the Mayor’s ZQA plan, in virtually the entire East Village, new market-rate developments would be allowed to grow five feet higher. While this seem like a modest amount, it’s a noticeable difference — in much of the East Village, existing buildings often average forty to fifty-five feet in height. A five foot difference is therefore significant.

The bigger change will come on East Village avenues and the blocks between 3rd and 4th Avenues. There new development will be able to grow by 25 feet or 31% over existing allowable height limits if they include 20% affordable housing – lifting height limits in these areas from 80 to 105 feet or 120 to 145 feet.

Some may say the height limit increase is worth it for the affordable housing produced. But all evidence points to the height limit increases not resulting in a single additional unit of affordable housing being built, and potentially only resulting in developments which would have been built anyway growing up to 25 feet or 31% taller.

Right now, East Village avenues and the blocks between 3rd and 4th Avenues have what is called “inclusionary zoning.” This means including 20% affordable housing in new developments is incentivized (but not required) by allowing developers to add additional market-rate square feet to help pay for the affordable housing they include. The new developments must currently abide by the existing height limits; currently about 50% of new developments in the East Village chose to include the affordable housing.

GVSHP investigated new developments in the East Village's affordable housing zones and found that at least five were approved by the city without requiring affordable housing, as DNAinfo reported.

The GVSHP identified these developments as: 84 Third Ave./138 E. 12th St. (The Nathaniel); 152-154 Second Ave.; 118 E. First St.; 438 E. 12th St.; and 67 Avenue C. (You can find a PDF of their letter revealing their findings to the city here.)

Andrew Berman, executive director of the GVSHP, told DNAinfo: "We are losing out on the affordable housing we should be getting. In return are buildings that are larger than they are supposed to be."

A Department of Buildings spokesperson told DNAinfo that they "will review each of the projects listed to ensure compliance with inclusionary housing requirements."


Anonymous said...

"Affordable housing" is mcgubment bureaucrook speak for taxpayer-subsidized housing.


"The world's population is gradually dividing into two types--Anarchists and criminals."
--Benjamin R. Tucker
So ask yourself a question punk--are you an anarchist or a crook?

bllue glass said...

the history of "low income" housing in cb#3 is a long one paved with money.
it all started out with the impossible cry 'all city-owned property for low income housing".
negotiated down to 80% low income subsidized by 20% market rate.
that didn't pan out and the reality was 80% market to 20% low income (now called affordable).
now it's pretty much lots of words and little affordable housing.
most of the "neighborhood" is gone with big glass towers replacing the less dense and more affordable, many beautiful, buildings. and let's not talk about the rents (commercial and residential).
the battle is totally lost here.
only developers win.

Anonymous said...

This is how it begins. This is how a great old neighborhood of the city with history, charm and as yet still unexplored aesthetics gets ruined. Just keep building...oh just a little bit higher....it won't have any impact. Seriously? Just how long will the builders an their BFFs, the bankers, keep on dating the CBBs? How long will it be allowed? Until there is nothing left worth fighting for because nobody said anything?
CBB...stand up and take a stand for a change....one that is in favor of the people who live in the neighborhood.

Anonymous said...

"taxpayer-subsidized housing"

yeah? build more of it and up the taxes on the rich then.

Anonymous said...

10:34 thank you

Anonymous said...

Some of you may remember the rezoning of the East Village and the LES, which was approved about 5 years ago. As you walk down 2nd Avenue look South. I remember when the Avalon was being developed, this is Whole Foods building on Bowery. I am shocked to see the monstrosity going up right behind the Avalon now. Andrew spearheaded the rezoning, saying it would protect the East Village and LES. Chrystie Street was upzoned, along with Houston, and Delancey. Many people stood behind the Inclusionary Plan. Now they have woken up to the fact that this program does not add to the stock of affordable housing we have. Be careful who you trust.

Anonymous said...

@10:34/11:32 AM:

taxation is theft.


cmarrtyy said...

Affordable housing is the Trojan for builders. Once you allow increased density neighborhoods are dead. We don't need affordable housing in Manhattan. It can be built where there are empty lots or it can come in the form of renovated housing. Besides the infrastructure can't handle the population we have now. What do we do with the hundreds...thousands of new people who are shoed-horned into the neighborhood? On so many levels this is wrong.. And it has to be stopped.

Anonymous said...

"Department of Buildings will ensure compliance" - hahaha, that's a good one!!

rob said...

Shouldn't HPD be monitoring the affordable housing?

DrBOP said...

Watch out for crooks in anarchist's clothing.