Department of City Planning (DCP) director Dan Garodnick recently announced the referral of the South Richmond Zoning Relief proposal after years of collaborative planning with Staten Island communities. The proposal aims to simplify zoning and planning procedures in the New York borough for homeowners, enhance the preservation of natural features, and provide greater community oversight of sensitive sites in the Special South Richmond Development District (SSRDD).
The initiative builds upon Mayor Eric Adams’ BLAST report, which includes 111 proposals to streamline land use processes and increase efficiency.
This proposal is the result of a partnership between the offices of Borough President Vito Fossella Jr and City Council Minority Leader Joseph Borelli, Staten Island Community Board 3, the Building Industry Association of NYC, and the Staten Island Chapter of the American Institute of Architects. It is expected to undergo public review starting from 10 April, providing opportunities for the public, community board, borough president, City Planning Commission, and City Council to offer feedback on the proposal.
Adams stated that the proposal will simplify the complicated rules and red tape that have hampered Staten Island homeowners in South Richmond for years. He also mentioned that the initiative would enhance the beauty of Staten Island and empower the community.
Zoning relief in Staten Island
The Zoning Relief proposal aims to address the complaints of the residents of the SSRDD who have struggled with the complex and burdensome process for small projects. The current regulations do not provide the same level of scrutiny on larger sites with sensitive natural features, which impact the public realm and neighbourhood character.
“With smart zoning and regulations, we can ensure government is working for New Yorkers. For too long, residents in the unique Special South Richmond Development District have faced onerous requirements to make even the smallest improvements to their homes, and in a way that does not further broader policy goals. We’re pleased to be moving forward with the zoning relief proposal that simplifies these regulations while also strengthening the protection of important natural areas,” said Garodnicksaid in a statement.
The DCP is responsible for developing land use policies and zoning regulations applicable citywide, promoting housing production and affordability, fostering economic development, and coordinating investments in infrastructure and services. The department also supports the development of resilient and sustainable communities across the five boroughs for a more equitable New York City.