Zoning Amendments Might Produce Bigger, Bulkier Buildings
Earlier this year, the American Institute of Architects proposed "text amendments" to city zoning that have flown relatively under the radar could result in bulkier, taller buildings in areas of the city with certain zoning (including many Brooklyn neighborhoods). Aaron Brashear of Concerned Citizens of Greenwood Heights sent out an email over the weekend about the proposal, which will be presented at a public forum this evening at Borough Hall that starts at 6:00PM. Among other things, the proposal would allow the elimination of building setbacks (as seen above) and for buildings to fill 100 percent of the lots on which they are built in certain zones (below). While the proposals wouldn't change the overall FAR of a building (which is the buildable square footage allowed by zoning), they would result in some significant changes that could make buildings appear taller and bulkier. Mr. Brashear writes:
At it's core, under the ruse of having more "contextual nature to the street scape of the 5 boros and flexibility for better design," the AIA has made recommendations that fly in the face of what the majority of the contextual rezonings in the city have attempted to accomplish: lower density and lower height which equal more light and air.There was a public hearing on the proposal in June and some of the documents have, apparently, been slow in coming to some community boards. Public comment is due by January 7, 2008. One can only assume there will be some as the details become known. The AIA's webpage on the changes is here. A full PDF on the changes (WARNING PDF) can be found here. The New York Chapter of the American Planning Association and the Municipal Art Society helped prepare the amendments.