SI church obtains approval for 941-car parking lot

Special permit is associated with major church addition. Gateway Cathedral, located on a 22.5 acre site at 200 Boscombe Avenue in Richmond Valley, Staten Island, applied for a special permit to allow a total of 941 accessory parking spaces. Gateway plans to expand its current 34,493-square-foot church by an additional 87,870 sq.ft. Once the expansion is completed, the church’s capacity will be 3,454 people, up from its current capacity of 820. The expansion plan also included a 12,648 square-foot addition to Gateway’s school, and construction of an outdoor athletic field and memorial gazebo garden.

Currently, Gateway has 225 accessory parking spaces. Under the expansion plan, the church must add an additional 250 parking spaces, for a total of 475 required parking spaces. Gateway, however, requested an additional 466 spaces bringing its total to 941.

At the Commission’s public hearing, five speakers appeared in favor and no one opposed. Gateway’s pastor stated that the church was in favor of widening nearby Richmond Valley Road, which Gateway partially owns, to accommodate the increased traffic that would result from the Cathedral’s expansion.

The Commission approved the application on March 20, 2006, finding that the site’s accessory streets will adequately handle the increased traffic. The Commission noted that Gateway had revised its plans to increase the width of Richmond Valley Road to a width of 45 to 65 feet.

ULURP Process: The Planning Commission, as lead agency, issued a negative declaration. Community Board 3 unanimously approved and Borough President James Molinaro approved with the condition that the width of Richmond Valley Road be expanded. City Council review is pending.

CPC: Gateway Cathedral (C 060134 ZSR) (March 20, 2006). CITYADMIN

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