Ex-Occupy Wall Streeters slam Crown Heights rezoning plan

July 30, 2013 02:30PM

The Crown Heights Assembly, a group of ex-Occupy Wall Streeters that evolved into a housing rights coalition, is demanding changes to a proposed rezoning of the center of gentrification in Crown Heights, days before the City Planning Commission is scheduled to vote on it, DNAinfo reported.

The group’s online petition calls for a new “anti-harassment zone” and “mandatory inclusionary zoning” for affordable housing about a week ahead of the Aug. 7 vote.

“The rezoning only includes a voluntary incentive, called Inclusionary Zoning, for developers to build some affordable units within market-rate developments,” the petition stated. “This incentive has a track record in NYC of resulting in few affordable units, and a vast array of luxury housing.”

If the rezoning is approved by City Planning and the City Council, strict limits would be implemented on new construction across a 55-block area bounded by Eastern Parkway to the south, Grand Avenue to the west and Nostrand Avenue to the east. The new zoning aims to reflect the “row-house and apartment building character” of the neighborhood and “incentivize affordable housing development along commercial corridors.” It would also permit developers to build along Franklin and Bedford avenues in exchange for more affordable units.

“Brooklyn CB 8 has been vocal and committed in its pursuit of affordable housing for the District,” Community Board 8 Chairwoman Nizjoni Granville wrote in a May 28 letter of support for the proposal. “CB 8 hopes for guarantees of permanently affordable housing from those developers and property owners benefiting from the rezoning.”

The Crown Heights Assembly did not respond to DNAinfo’s email request for comment. [DNAinfo]Julie Strickland