Flatbush to be rezoned?
City is ‘down’ with Flatbush rezoning
By Helen Klein
In response to requests from area residents and officials to consider down-zoning portions of East Flatbush, the Department of City Planning (DCP) has begun evaluating the western section of the board area for a possible rezoning.
Following a meeting with Community Board 17 members, DCP provided the board with a map of existing zoning in the potential study area, which is roughly the shape of a pair of rectangles, one placed unevenly on top of the other.
The area is bounded at its most southerly point by the Long Island Railroad, and by Clarkson Avenue on the north. Its most westerly point is Bedford Avenue (from Clarkson Avenue to Foster Avenue); from Foster Avenue, south, it is bounded on the west by Nostrand Avenue, as far as Glenwood Road, where the western boundary of the potential study area shifts eastward to East 32nd Street. On the east, the potential study area is bounded by East 37th Street, between the tracks and Avenue D, and by East 35th Street north of there to Lenox Road, where the boundary moves slightly west, to New York Avenue.
To facilitate the evaluation, DCP requested that CB 17 provide the agency with photos of streets throughout the general area, to aid the process, which is in a very preliminary stage. If the agency does a study, it will craft a rezoning proposal that will focus on assigning contextual zoning districts to the area, sometimes on a block-by-block basis.
Albert Payne, the chairperson of the board’s Land Use Committee, said that the board had asked that the agency “fast-track” the rezoning. “They came back to us rather quickly,” he went on, adding that the board intended to send out the requested photographs quickly as well.
A key issue, stressed Payne, is preserving the area’s significant architecture, such as the Craftsman style bungalows and Victorian houses. Now, many of the buildings are endangered, because the underlying zoning, which is R-6, would allow the one and two-family structures to be razed to make way for larger multi-family buildings that would not only change the look of the community, but also strain its infrastructure because of the increased population they would bring.
©Courier-Life Publications 2007