City to Vote on Parking Rules Downtown Today


Today the city council is set to look at whether or not developers of Downtown residential buildings need to include parking with their new buildings, as currently required by zoning laws, The New York Times reported. Some city officials, developers and public transportation advocates say Downtown already has too much parking! (Is there any such thing?) Council Member Letitia James said she was not convinced it’s a good idea to scrap parking already built, since developers will likely just transform it into more luxury housing rather than, say, community space or affordable housing. Borough President Marty Markowitz’s call for increased bike parking, already covered by this blog, will not be addressed today. What do you think? Is this a giveaway to developers, or would Downtown be better off with less parking in new residential developments?
City Takes up Zoning to Erase Downtown’s Glut of Parking Spaces [NY Times]
Photo by Benzadrine

15 Comment

  • All new residential towers should be required to have ground floor retail. Parking should be optional and driven by the market for parking spaces.

  • All new residential towers should be required to have ground floor retail. Parking should be optional and driven by the market for parking spaces.

  • Yes, there is too much parking when it sits unused or creates incentives for those who would otherwise take the bus or train to drive their car into the city center. So Letitia James is saying that unused/unnecessary parking is better than luxury housing? That doesn;’t seem very sensible.

  • I think schools, parks, dog runs or other community amenites (ground floor space for day care, senior centers, etc) should be required rather than parking.

  • “Developers would just turn it into more luxury housing.” As if that’s a bad thing! More luxury housing 1) reduces upward market pressure on housing prices at all levels and 2) increases the tax base for funding services that disproportionately (and properly) do not go to those actually living in the luxury housing.

    Agree on ground-floor retail as well.

  • “Council Member Letitia James said she was not convinced it’s a good idea to scrap parking already built, since developers will likely just transform it into more luxury housing rather than, say, community space or affordable housing”

    I’m by no means anti-affordable housing. but WTF?

  • Requiring parking is so last century. The kids have other people drive them these days, silly!

  • Tish James is only saying don’t get rid of parking that already exists. The issue is whether to insist developers create parking for new developments and it looks like the consensus is “no.” It kills street life. Retail is much better.

  • It doesn’t really make sense to require parking spaces for new downtown residential buildings. It just encourages people to keep cars. Since this is a location where one doesn’t really need one, and the streets are clogged with too much traffic already, and it can wreck the streetscape, like that picture above, why require it? Some developers may do it anyway for superluxury places; others will skip it, knowing they can sell apartments without it.

  • Yes, there definitely is such a thing as too much parking, and DTBklyn has too much of it.
    I hope they rezone to allow for existing parking to be scrapped.

  • yeah, dog runs. Encourage people to have those dirty noisy animals in city.
    downtown is going to lose lot of parking as develop continues. Buildings should have underground parking.

  • yeah, dog runs. Encourage people to have those dirty noisy animals in city.
    downtown is going to lose lot of parking as develop continues. Buildings should have underground parking.

  • This rule should ABSOLUTELY be amended. The article is completely correct, in stating that people move to downtown Brooklyn because of it’s proximity to nearly EVERY subway, bridges and the LIRR. The rule, as it is currently constructed, causes an undue hardship on developers. Case in point: The Bergen Tile site, near the arena, with a proposed development.

    http://www.brownstoner.com/blog/2012/02/new-building-will-replace-bergen-tile-near-arena/

    The owner wants to build a CONTEXTUALLY SCALED 6 story mixed-use building of approx. 50 units. Current zoning would require 26 parking spots in a difficult lot! That just doesn’t make any sense. The zoning calls for either inefficiently small buildings with a large proportion of parking or huge over-scaled buildings with an over-abundance of parking. The historical urban fabric doesn’t require this much parking, why should new construction? Easing parking restrictions would allow for more small/medium scale development downtown, not just these huge high-rises.

    The high-rises are being built only to reach the profit margin needed by the developers, after obliging all of the “community’s” whims. Well, people don’t move to Brooklyn to live in towers, they live here to be in a residential neighborhood.

    Forcing developers to build things that go underutilized (and they can’t recoup their money on) makes housing all the more unaffordable for the rest of us.

    Having said all of that, parking is also an essential part of the city and should not be ignored. Very large scale projects should still have restrictions. The last thing we would ever want is urban fabric being torn down in the future to accommodate the need for more parking, as has happened in virtually every North American city.

  • I say more parking, we don’t even have enough.

    Why does every freaking morsel of land have to have a high rise luxury building on it.