Bushwick rezoning faces deadlock amid local opposition

Local council member wants far fewer new units than what city has planned

TRD New York /
Jan.January 07, 2020 09:05 AM
Council Member Antonio Reynoso and a map of Bushwick Planning Framework (Click for more info)

Council Member Antonio Reynoso and a map of Bushwick Planning Framework (Click for more info)

With just two years left in Mayor de Blasio’s term, another one of the administration’s rezoning efforts is on the verge of demise.

The city’s planning department and local councilman Antonio Reynoso are deadlocked over the scope of the rezoning of a 300-block swathe of Bushwick, including the number of market-rate and affordable units the plan will allow, Crain’s reported.

“Based on what has happened to date, I’m not supremely confident we’ll come to an agreement,” Council member Reynoso’s land use director Asher Freeman told the publication. “It would be a slap in the face for the city to dismiss our ideas given all the work and time that has gone into this.”

The city’s proposed plan would add around 5,600 apartments to the neighborhood, up to 1,680 of which would be affordable under mandatory inclusionary housing rules. But Council member Reynoso has insisted that the number of new units be capped at 2,000, all of which would be affordable.

In December, the council member sent a letter to city hall requesting that the administration respond to his demands by Jan. 10, or this Friday. Sources told Crain’s that while negotiations were ongoing, the chances of reaching an agreement by then remain low.

Other disagreements between the two sides include the upzoning of side blocks and rezoning of manufacturing lots to permit residential development.

An extended delay in the Bushwick rezoning would likely make it impossible to implement before the end of de Blasio’s term. The city has also faced resistance from Council member Reynoso regarding its plans for a rezoning of the nearby North Brooklyn Industrial Business Zone.

De Blasio’s effort to spur housing development through neighborhood rezonings hit another setback last month, when a New York Supreme Court judge took the highly unusual move of annulling the Inwood rezoning. [Crain’s] — Kevin Sun

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