This week the Department of City Planning is expected to announce the formation of an Advisory Board to participate in a planning study of SoHo and NoHo’s current zoning. Both neighborhoods share the same land-use regulations.
The SoHo Alliance has been invited to the table. This is significant since the Alliance has long served as the guardian of our successful zoning.
The SoHo Artists Association (which later evolved into the SoHo Alliance) partnered with City Planning in 1971 to enact the current zoning policies.
It later worked with the agency to amend the zoning laws several times, for instance, to restrict night clubs — one reason our neighborhood has never devolved into the Meatpacking District.
In 2005 the Alliance again collaborated with City Planning on an amendment to permit the construction of new residential buildings. Prior to that, residency was limited to converted buildings only.
We have the knowledge, experience and history to play a significant role in this study,
There will be eighteen other players involved as well, including local elected officials, the community board, other local neighborhood, tenant and cultural associations, as well as representatives from the real estate and retail fields.
The idea is to study whether the current zoning is working, needs tweaking, requires a complete overhaul or should be left alone. We are not quite sure who is pushing this.
There will be monthly meetings of the Advisory Board starting in January and lasting four to seven months. A report should be out by summer.
We shall keep you abreast of developments.
PO Box 429
New York, NY 10012
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