With no public notice of applications or decisions made, and no opportunity to review or challenge applications, these will be presented as facts to LPC Staff, who are pressed to operate beyond capacity by the sheer volume of applications in today’s fast-paced market. Much to neighbors’ dismay, distressed historic family homes are being bought up and renovated for quick profit.
Rear yard and rooftop additions are of particular concern. Our shared courtyards were designed to bring light and air into our apartments. The trend toward converting this essential space into rooftop decks and rear balconies, to be used by a few, negatively impacts everyone else’s quality of life. Preservation is not just about how buildings look from the street: it’s about how buildings function, and what they were designed to do. Decisions that affect the public should include public input!
Read the Historic District Council’s comprehensive comments and testimony here.
For the second time in two years, the State legislature sought to lift a half-century old limit on the size of residential buildings.
STATE SENATOR BRAD HOYLMAN issued a statement on the dangerous proposal to ELIMINATE HEIGHT RESTRICTIONS ON RESIDENTIAL BUILDINGS IN NEW YORK CITY:
“I am outraged that Senate Republicans proposed needlessly eliminating height restrictions by repealing the maximum Floor Area Ratio for residential buildings in New York City . . . This repeal would be one of the most dramatic changes in zoning law in the past 50 years, and it is unconscionable to try and push it through with no debate. I opposed this last year and will continue to fight tooth and nail to prevent this irresponsible proposal from becoming a reality.”
The NYS budget that passed last week will keep our height restrictions in place for now, but these ideas have a tendency to resurface when an opportunity appears. We will remain vigilant.