3rd Zoning Meeting Wed, 3/20

The third public meeting on the proposed rezoning of SoHo/NoHo will take place at 6:00 this Wednesday, March 20 in the north wing of the Municipal Building, 1 Centre Street across from Reade Street.  The subsequent four meetings are also scheduled to be held there: April 11, May 2, June 6. 
Please Forward to Friends & Neighbors.
Wednesday’s meeting will focus on: Living in the Neighborhood; Challenges of Renting/Owning; Future of Housing & Live/Work.  
6:00 – 6:15  Meet & Greet6:15 – 6:40  Presentation by Sponsors6:40 – 7:40  Facilitated Group Discussion7:40 – 8:10  Report Back and Q&A
According to the sponsors, you will be asked to:

  • Share your experiences of living (renting & owning) in SoHo/NoHo
  • Discuss the sponsors’ presentation on SoHo/NoHo’s residential and live/work landscape
  • Consider opportunities for housing affordability and live/work
  • Identify goals for housing and live/work

Below are some bullet points to advocate:

  • Preserve the existing rights and protections for residents, especially those in Joint Living-Work Quarters for Artists, JLWQA, (aka A.I.R.) 
  • Maintain the existing FAR (Floor Area Ratio = a measure of density and height limit, based on the floor area)  This will ensure continued low-rise buildings.
  • Retain the Public Review requirement for developments or uses not currently permitted. Developers want this removed.
  • Limit university uses to those allowed under existing zoning.
  • Retain the current 5,000 square-feet maximum for bars and restaurants. (Balthazar is 4,900 square feet, e.g.)
  • Keep the current 1,200 square-feet minimum for residential/JLWQA space.  SoHo/NoHo is renowned for its lofts, not its pieds-a-terre or studio apartments.
  • Keep the existing limits on the maximum allowable size of retail spaces, 10,000 square feet.
  • Maintain the creative character of SoHo and NoHo.

Please do your best to attend. It is important our voices are heard.
Finally, an editorial in last week’s Villager echoed our position on this zoning initiative. Read it here: https://www.thevillager.com/2019/03/editorial-decoding-soho-noho-rezoning/

Sincerely,

Sean SweeneyDirector

SoHo AlliancePO Box 429New York, NY 10012212-353-8466info@sohoalliance.orgsohoalliance.org

Save SoHo/NoHo Coalition Forms / How You Can Help / Public Meeting Date Changed

– Save SoHo/NoHo Coalition Forms– How You Can Help (see below)- Public Meeting Date Changed = March 20, Wednesday
Please Forward to Friends & Neighbors
The SoHo Alliance has joined the Bowery Alliance of Neighbors, Broadway Residents Coalition, Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation, New York City Loft Tenants and the NoHo Neighborhood Association to establish the Save SoHo/NoHo Coalition.
This broad union of residents and small businesses formed in response to the city’s current initiative to rezone our neighborhood. 
It also seeks to give balance to a lobbying bloc of some of the city’s biggest landlords and real-estate investors who are seeking to change our successful zoning for their own ends, as well as a recent NYU study that calls for expansion of classrooms and housing into NoHo (and, by extension, SoHo). 
The Save SoHo/NoHo Coalition presented a list of six basic principles, with more details to follow as the process wends forward:

  • Preserve the existing rights and protections for residents, especially artists and others in Joint Living-Work Quarters for Artists, JLWQA, (aka A.I.R.) 
  • Maintain the existing FAR (Floor Area Ratio = a measure of density and height limit, based on floor area)
  • Keep existing limits on the maximum allowable size of retail spaces
  • Retain the Public Review requirement for developments or uses not currently permitted
  • Limit university uses to those allowed under existing zoning
  • Maintain the creative character of SoHo and NoHo

We have also asked that a certified artist be included in the city’s Advisory Group and that the process be extended until at least the fall.
Moreover, it is unsettling that, although hundreds of residents and small business owners took the time and effort to attend the first two public meetings, only a smattering of people from the real-estate industry have bothered to show up to these events.
Since this zoning initiative is the result of pressure from real-estate people and not us, we find it perplexing that the instigators chose to be absent. 
Is it any wonder the SoHo Alliance mailbox has been flooded with emails from you expressing distrust and skepticism, feeling that this current process is really just a touchy-feely attempt to soothe us into thinking we actually have a say in our future?
How You Can HelpWrite your officials, urging them to protect SoHo and NoHo and to support unequivocally our planning principles, not the real-estate lobby’s.Click HERE now to send your message directly to the electeds. It takes but a minute and provides a direct link for your voice to our officials.
**************************************NOTE: The date for the next public meeting on this zoning initiative has been changed to Wednesday, March 20.  An earlier announcement had it set for March 21.
Please mark it in your calendar and join the hundreds of your neighbors who have attended the two prior meetings. Time and place to be announced.

Sincerely,

Sean SweeneyDirector

SoHo AlliancePO Box 429New York, NY 10012212-353-8466info@sohoalliance.orgsohoalliance.org