Business owners call for Crown Heights industrial zone revamp

Area east of Barclays Center could accommodate new housing and light industry, advocates say
July 23, 2014 12:35PM

Some building and business owners are calling on the city to rezone a portion of Crown Heights to allow residential properties to rise above light industrial facilities.

The area just east of Barclays Center is dominated by one-story warehouses and garages due to zoning left over from an era when the neighborhood serviced rail lines along Atlantic Avenue, WNYC reported. But between October and March of this year, there were more apartment building sales transactions in Crown Heights than any other city neighborhood, according to Ariel Property Advisors data cited by the station. That residential demand is leading some to question whether the current zoning is still relevant, and if a plan for mixed-use properties would be a better option.

“I don’t know if the case can be made that we need light industrial, light manufacturing here,” Charles McMickens, managing director of Global Square and a Crown Heights building owner told WNYC. “Most of the space is used for storage, which isn’t, I think, an optimal use for industrial space.”

Last month, Alicia Glenn, deputy mayor for housing and economic development, said she would like to see the Department of Planning think differently about making the city more vertical while also supporting manufacturing and industry, WNYC reported. [WNYC]Tom DiChristopher