Volume 17, Number 40 | February 25 - March 3, 2005

North Tribeca rezoning

North Tribeca may not be a manufacturing district for much longer, according to the Department of City Planning. The department is currently evaluating the neighborhood to give it a long-awaited zoning makeover.

“The department does in fact believe it is time to look at a rezoning for North Tribeca,” said Rachaele Raynoff, a City Planning spokesperson. “I suspect we’re looking at a commercial district designation that would allow for residential use.”

City Planning is not alone in its convictions. The Jack Parker Corporation is awaiting certification from the department for a zoning application for a four-block site extending from West to Washington Sts. and from Watts to Hubert, leased to the corporation by the Ponte Family. The application, which proposes to build up to 210 feet on West St. has been met with heavy criticism from neighborhood and community groups.

In December, Community Board 1 called for an Environmental Impact Statement for the Parker development and submitted a re-zoning proposal of its own for the area south of Canal St. and north of Hubert St., Beach St., Ericsson Place and Walker St., between West St. and Broadway.

With City Planning now conducting its own study, it is clear that the area is ready for a change. “Obviously anytime you see a lot of B.S.A. variances and special permits from city planning in an area, the existing zoning is not appropriate,” said Judy Duffy, assistant district manager for C.B. 1.

Duffy expects City Planning to consider South Tribeca, which was rezoned 10 years ago for commercial and residential use, and Hudson Sq., which was also rezoned in the same manner, when it rezones North Tribeca.

“Given the fact that the C6-2A, which we’ve been kicking around, is the zoning to the south and the C6-2A is the zoning to the north that they just passed, logic would have it that it will probably be zoned the same way since the buildings are very similar in both cases and the Tribeca South zoning over the last several years has proven to be very successful,” she said. “So we’re hopeful that they will see eye to eye with us.”

Although City Planning is not required to consult with the community board in its process, Raynoff expects that the department will anyway. “We’ll be working pretty closely with the community because that’s the way we do business,” she said.

— Ronda Kaysen

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