Tuesday, January 15, 2008

de Blasio Calls For Downzoning of Carroll Gardens

It has become fashionable in certain circles to bash Bill deBlasio for perceived shortcomings. I really don't think the guy gets a fair shake; from what I've seen he is tireless in his efforts and is highly accessible to constituents.

In any event, deBlasio will be introducing a resolution specifically calling for a downzoning and the functional (but legal) equivalent of CORD's long-sought moratorium on development over 50'. The Carroll Gardens Neighborhood Association has worked hard to make a downzoning happen; unfortunately, City Planning won't prioritize our needs without outside pressure from the Council and the press.

Save the date - Jan 29th - for a rally to support this resolution . . . details will be posted here when I get them. I can't stress this enough . . . take the time to come out for the rally. I'm skipping out of work for it. This is the sort of thing that does get results. The DRAFT:

Res. No.

Resolution calling upon the Department of City Planning to commence immediately a downzoning study of Carroll Gardens, Brooklyn and upon the Department of Buildings to not issue permits that would allow any new construction or alteration to an existing building to exceed a height limit of 50 feet until the Carroll Gardens neighborhood downzoning is complete.

By Council Member de Blasio

Whereas, Carroll Gardens is a charming neighborhood defined by its tree-lined streets, beautiful 3-4 story brownstones, and atypical setbacks that create deep front yards; and

Whereas, The architecture and layout of Carroll Gardens creates a village-like character, which is not commonly found in New York City; and

Whereas, Currently, Carroll Gardens is zoned R6, which does not provide a restriction on height; and

Whereas, With the recent state of hyper-development in Brooklyn, there is widespread concern that large scale new constructions pose a threat to the fabric of this historical Brooklyn neighborhood; and

Whereas, According to a 2006 survey by Brooklyn Community Board 6, 91% of neighborhood residents surveyed responded that they were either very concerned or concerned about the height or size of new buildings in the neighborhood. Further, 83% of those surveyed indicated that they favored stricter limits on the height, size and/or overall bulk of new buildings; and

Whereas, A neighborhood downzoning by the Department of City Planning would be the most effective long term solution to the problem of over-development in Carroll Gardens; and

Whereas, A 50 foot height limit will protect the neighborhood from over-development while also providing time for the Department of City Planning to perform the necessary study and analysis that would precede the downzoning of Carroll Gardens; and

Whereas, A height restriction of 50 feet, to be implemented immediately, will cap the height on new building construction or alternation to existing buildings to prevent the construction of buildings higher than 50 feet over the next several years; now, therefore, be it

Resolved, That the Council of the City of New York calls upon the Department of City Planning to commence immediately a downzoning study of Carroll Gardens, Brooklyn and upon the Department of Buildings to not issue permits that would allow any new construction or alteration to an existing building to exceed a height limit of 50 feet until the Carroll Gardens neighborhood downzoning is complete.

5 comments:

Thanks said...

I agree with you wholeheartedly. I don't understand why it's become so fashionable to rip on Bill. He's a city council person who needs to represent all the interests within his district. He can't only be the voice of the "keep things exactly as they are" verging on NIMBYists that shout so loudly. Compromise is most always eventually required. I think he's maintained a pretty solid stance on keeping things in check, while not hindering change and growth, as is necessary in any living thing - like a vibrant city and neighborhood.

I do not want our beautiful historic neighborhoods destroyed at all. I love living here. But I also believe making New York City more dense is important, otherwise more farmlands in New Jersey (make that Pennsylvania) will be turned into awful tract housing suburbs. The important thing is to have responsible development done in a, hopefully, more attractive way than what's going up on 4th Avenue in Park Slope/Gowanus. Remember the name of our favorite poster-organization: Develop, don't destroy BROOKLYN!

Let's keep talking and don't beat up the people who we need to help us.

Anonymous said...

Bill gets bashed because he is a lying , pandering no morals individual who seezes any opportunity he can to bash other people to elevate himself. If you really are a person in the neighborhood and not some flunky from his office you to would know this

thanks again said...

hey anonymous, your vitriol is so clich├ęd. I do live in the neighborhood and I disagree with you. I love how one immediately gets accused of working for someone just because they disagree with your position. I am no shill. I just happen to have an opinion slightly different from that spouted in the blogosphere recently. And I don't agree with everything Bill does or has done. But I do think about things and don't just spout anger. I think conversations work better. So take that...

gary said...

Anonymous - "a lying , pandering no morals individual"

Watch it with the slander here. If you're going to make a statement like that, back it up with specific examples, or I will delete your comments.

Gian said...

I agree with the above post that it is important to cite specific instances to justify criticism in public forums like this one.

That said, it didn't look good when Mr. DeB. skipped a 12/21 meeting between residents of Union and Sackett St. and Clarett representatives for what was facetiously referred to as a "family gathering in Iowa."
It was at that meeting that the Clarett Group representatives made certain verbal promises about the nature, scheduling and promised interaction -- such as only working during accept hours and making a full-time representative available on site -- that have not been honored.
If the Councilman had been there, perhaps they may have been more likely to maintain them.