Thursday, August 9, 2018

NYC approves Inwood rezoning, despite resident protests

Councilman Ydanis Rodriguez tried to allay community concerns about the new zoning changes for Inwood, saying, “This rezoning is not about pushing tenants out,” but about “millions of dollars in investment.” Credit Chang W. Lee/The New York Times

Jeffery C. Mays reports for the New York Times:

After three years of planning, meetings and protests, the City Council overwhelmingly approved a plan on Wednesday to rezone a large swath of Inwood, often referred to as the last affordable neighborhood in Manhattan.The proposal is part of Mayor Bill de Blasio’s plan to rezone up to 15 neighborhoods across the city and create and preserve 300,000 units of affordable housing by 2026. Inwood became the fifth neighborhood, all low-income and largely minority, to be rezoned under the plan.

The rezoning will create and preserve 4,100 units of affordable housing, including 925 units on city-owned land and 675 units that will be established in market-rate buildings under housing rules that require developers to build affordable housing in projects made possible by rezoning.

“The approval of the Inwood neighborhood rezoning means a fairer, stronger future for a community that has experienced decades of disinvestment,” Mr. de Blasio said in a statement. “It means affordability, security and opportunity for residents and new immigrants alike.”

But a coalition of Inwood residents has opposed the plan because they fear that even with new affordable units, an influx of market-rate apartments will increase rents and displace longtime residents.

[Residents of Inwood talk of a way of life there, a sense of place, order and community that they fear will be threatened if the new zoning changes the character of the neighborhood. Read more here about the fight for Inwood’s future.]

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