Partnership fights mayor’s push for housing in industrial zones

Industry and housing advocates seek to protect jobs amid housing boom

New York /
Jul.July 07, 2014 05:40 PM

Businesses are finding unlikely partners in their push to keep residential development out of the city’s industrial business zones: housing advocates.

Industrial and housing activists have lately joined together to call on Mayor Bill de Blasio to add manufacturing jobs and prevent home building from negatively impacting existing industrial areas, Crain’s reported. The administration has stoked concerns that it supports carving out parts of the city’s 17 industrial business zones for new housing.

“There may be an occasional moment when it is correct to build housing in an IBZ, but it should be rare and offset by a significant commitment to increasing city support for the modern, light-manufacturing sector,” Benjamin Dulchin, executive director of the Association for Neighborhood and Housing Development, told Crain’s.

Business owners in north Brooklyn told Crain’s residential development in Williamsburg and Greenpoint is making it more difficult to run industrial businesses in those neighborhoods because residents complain about noise and ride bikes among trucks. Gowanus is ground zero for the phenomenon, John Reinertsen, a broker with CBRE, told Crain’s.

“Landlords put tenants in for a short term because they need a placeholder and someone to carry the property for the next five years,” said Reinertsen. “You want to keep your options open as a developer.” [Crain’s]Tom DiChristopher


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