Far West Village contextual rezoning approved

Council approved six-block contextual downzoning to reflect residential uses that predominate historically commercial area. On October 27, 2010, the City Council approved the Department of City Planning’s proposal to rezone portions of six blocks in Manhattan’s Far West Village from C6-1 to C1-6A. The contextual downzoning impacted the blocks generally bounded by the east side of Washington Street between West 12th and West 10th Streets and the west side of Greenwich Street between Perry and West 10th Streets. Except for a single lot, all the properties within the rezoning area are located in either the Greenwich Village Historic District or the Greenwich Village Historic District Extension.

The Far West Village was historically characterized by a range of commercial, manufacturing, and residential uses that reflected the neighborhood’s proximity to the Hudson River’s working waterfront. The area is now characterized by residential uses. Three- to five-story apartment buildings with ground floor retail line the eastern side of Washington Street, and warehouse buildings along Perry and Charles Streets have been converted to residential uses. The majority of the buildings in the area are less than 80 feet in height.

The area’s prior C6-1 zoning regulations, which did not include a maximum building height, incentivized commercial development by permitting nearly twice as much commercial floor area as residential floor area. Planning proposed rezoning the area to C1-6A in order to better reflect its character and scale. The new C1-6A district’s regulations encourage residential development by limiting allowable commercial floor area and by establishing minimum and maximum streetwall heights and an overall building height limit of 80 feet.

Manhattan Community Board 2 and Borough President Scott M. Stringer supported the rezoning. The City Planning Commission unanimously approved the plan noting that the area’s prior zoning encouraged new, out-of-scale and out-of-character development.

At the Council’s Zoning & Franchises Subcommittee hearing, residents and a representative from the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation spoke in support. No one spoke in opposition. The Subcommittee unanimously approved the plan, as did the Land Use Committee and full Council.

ULURP Process
Lead Agency: CPC, Neg. Dec.
Comm. Bd.: MN 2, App’d, 37-0-0
Boro. Pres.: App’d
CPC: App’d, 11-0-0
Council: App’d, 47-0-0

Council: Washington and Greenwich Streets Rezoning (Oct. 27, 2010).

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