The Real Deal New York

Queens residents reject city’s affordable housing proposals

Community Board 2 cites "unintentional consequences" like overcrowding

November 11, 2015 04:20PM

Carl Weisbrod Bill de Blasio

From left: Carl Weisbrod and Bill de Blasio

A Queens community board has rejected the city’s proposals to create more affordable housing in the borough through two zoning changes, citing concerns that the plan would strain public services like schools and subways.

Queens Community Board 2 shot down two citywide zoning text amendments – Zoning for Quality and Affordability, and Mandatory Inclusionary Housing – proposed by the Department of City Planning to create more affordable units.

The board zeroed in on the fact that no simultaneous plan was crafted to address overcrowding that’s already taking place in the area, according to DNAinfo. Doctor offices, schools and other community spaces are already feeling the crunch, residents said.

The proposals, which city officials have floated to community boards across the city since September, are two facets of the de Blasio administration’s greater housing goals for the next decade.

Zoning for Quality and Affordability aims to upgrade existing zoning rules that the city considers outdated, including increasing the maximum height of buildings in certain areas in order to facilitate better designs and accommodate more affordable and senior housing.

The Mandatory Inclusionary Housing plan, meanwhile, would require developers who build in specifically zoned neighborhoods to include a portion of permanently affordable units as part of their projects.

While the board said it supports the city’s mission to create more affordable housing, there must also be a “look at the potential unintentional consequences” as a result of such initiatives, according to CB2 chair Pat O’Brien. [DNAinfo]Rey Mashayekhi