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December 6, 2004

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


December 6, 2004–The Department of City Planning (DCP) today certified a rezoning proposal designed to preserve the neighborhood character of more than 60 blocks of Springfield Gardens located north of JFK International Airport and east of Baisley Pond Park in southeast Queens, City Planning Director Amanda M. Burden announced. Recent building trends threaten to alter the neighborhood’s character through the construction of multi-family structures which are permitted by zoning that has governed the area since 1961. The proposed rezoning will ensure that any new construction would more closely match the one- and two-family detached and semi-detached homes that typify the area’s development. City Planning’s proposed rezoning now goes to Community Board 12, to begin its official public review.

"City Planning’s rezoning proposal provides guidelines for compatible development at an appropriate density," said Director Burden. "This proposal preserves the low-density character of Springfield Gardens, but allows for home owners to invest in expansion by adding up to a second unit to their property."

The rezoning proposal affects a roughly triangular area bounded by North Conduit Avenue, Baisley Boulevard and Guy R. Brewer Boulevard that is nearly entirely zoned R3-2 today. The area’s existing R3-2 zoning has allowed the construction of several out-of-context, row house apartment developments, primarily along Guy R. Brewer Boulevard at the eastern edge of the community. The proposed rezoning would replace the R3-2 district, under which a variety of housing types, including multi-family apartments and row houses, may be constructed. Two new zoning districts would be designated in the area: R3X and R3-1.

An R3X zoning district is proposed for 27 blocks in the northern portion of the community generally bounded by Baisley Boulevard, Guy R. Brewer Boulevard, 134 th Avenue, Rockaway Boulevard and 153 rd Street. The R3X district will limit new development to detached one- and two-family structures. An R3-1 zoning district is proposed for 39 blocks in the neighborhood’s southern section bounded by Guy R. Brewer Boulevard, North Conduit Avenue, Baisley Boulevard and 153 rd Street. This district allows single- and two-family detached as well as semi-detached houses.

The Department has worked closely with members of the United Neighbors Civic Association of Jamaica over the past year in developing the rezoning proposal. The proposal has also been encouraged by the Borough President’s Zoning Task Force and Councilmembers Leroy Comrie, Allan Jennings and James Sanders, Jr., whose districts cover portions of the rezoning area.

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).

More information on the proposal is available at the Department of City Planning’s website.

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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