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March 22, 2004

CONTACT: Rachaele Raynoff, Press Secretary -- (212) 720-3471


March 22 - The Department of City Planning (DCP) today certified a rezoning proposal designed to preserve the neighborhood character of the Bellerose, Queens community, City Planning Director Amanda M. Burden announced. The proposed rezoning would ensure that any new construction will match the mostly detached, one- and two-family houses prevalent in the area. The proposal responds to community concerns about possible construction of multi-family homes that are allowed under existing zoning established in 1961. It now goes to Community Board 13, beginning the official public review process.

"City Planning’s rezoning proposal in Bellerose furthers the Bloomberg administration’s goal of reinforcing the distinctive character of residential neighborhoods," said Ms. Burden, "Our changes will preserve the one- and two-story, free-standing homes of the Bellerose neighborhood that its residents prize."

The rezoning proposal would change the zoning for 22 blocks in the portion of the Bellerose neighborhood situated between the Creedmoor State Hospital campus and the Cross Island Parkway. The rezoning would replace the current R3-2 zoning district, which permits a variety of housing types including garden apartments, row houses, detached and semi-detached homes as well as multi-family apartment structures. Two new zoning districts would be mapped in the area: R3A and R2.

The R3A zoning district is proposed for eight blocks bounded by Hillside Avenue, the Cross Island Parkway, 87th Avenue and Creedmoor State Hospital. It will limit new development to detached one- and two-family structures.

The R2 regulations would limit residential development to single-family, detached homes on slightly larger lots. It is being proposed for the 14 blocks bounded by Hillside Avenue, the eastern Creedmoor State Hospital property line, Union Turnpike, Commonwealth Parkway and the Cross Island Parkway.

This rezoning action extends R2 and R3A zoning districts from adjacent portions of the Bellerose neighborhood, including areas that were rezoned in 1989 and 1991 from R3-2 and R4 to R3A, also to prevent inappropriate development. The new rezoning proposal responds to requests from Community Board 13, the Borough President’s Zoning Task Force and Councilmember David Weprin to similarly protect this portion of Bellerose from out-of-character buildings.

DCP also certified an application today from the Royal Ranch Civic Association and Community Board 13 to extend an existing R2 zone to 13 additional lots of the Royal Ranch development in the Floral Park section of Queens that are currently zoned R3-2. The rezoning would permit only single family homes ensuring that future development will reflect the neighborhood’s character.

The community board now has 60 days to review both proposals, after which they will go to the Borough President, the City Planning Commission and the City Council as part of the City’s Uniform Land Use Review Procedure (ULURP).

The Department of City Planning website contains more information on zoning and ULURP.

City Planning
The Department of City Planning is responsible for the City's physical and socioeconomic planning, including land use and environmental review; preparation of plans and policies; and provision of technical assistance and planning information to government agencies, public officials, and community boards.

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