Gowanus Lounge: Serving Brooklyn

Carroll Gardens Streets Officially Declared Narrow by City Council

July 24th, 2008 · 1 Comment

An effort to officially define a number of very narrow streets in Carroll Gardens as actually being narrow for zoning purposes received unanimous support from the City Council yesterday afternoon. The “Narrow Streets” Zoning Text Amendment had won wide political and community support. It changes obscure, yet critical, zoning language that had considered very narrow streets as being wide because gardens in front of homes was considered as part of a street’s width. The change shaves several stories from the height of any new construction and reduces the size of additions to existing buildings (sometimes called “tumors”). The maximum height of new buildings on narrow streets is 55 feet. The controversial 360 Smith Street building (Oliver House) is more than 70 feet tall under the old zoning language. City Council Member Bill de Blasio said in statement after the measure passed the Council that it is “a critical piece in the larger puzzle of preserving the character of our neighborhood.” The zoning text amendment change is seen as an interim measure before a general downzoning of the neighborhood. Calls for a moratorium on development of buildings of a certain height have gotten nowhere. “While this is a positive step forward, we must continue to focus our efforts on a neighborhood wide down zoning,” Mr. de Blasio said in a statement. “Limiting the permitted heights and densities of new buildings will help to match future developments to the existing low-scale context of the neighborhood.” The CORD group, which fought for the change, sent out an email late last night saying, in part: “This is a moment to for all Carroll Gardens residents, their friends and neighbors to celebrate! We CG residents have worked long and hard for fourteen months to arrive at this point. This is a great step in our neighborhood’s commitment to maintain its integrity and its unique character.”

Tags: Carroll Gardens · Rezoning

1 response so far ↓

  • 1 brooklyngirl // Jul 24, 2008 at 9:13 am

    So will this have any effect on the height of the 360 smith building or are we SOL on that one?