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Projects & Proposals > Brooklyn > Flatbush Rezoning Printer Friendly Version
Flatbush Rezoning - Approved!
Existing Context and Zoning
Overview | Existing Context & Zoning | Proposed Zoning | Public Review

Neighborhood Character
The neighborhoods of Flatbush are generally located directly south of Prospect Park, between the major thoroughfares of Coney Island Avenue and Flatbush Avenue, north of Farragut Road, and between Coney Island Avenue and Nostrand Avenue to the south of Farragut Road.

Flatbush is typically known for the large, green lots of detached homes and apartment buildings along Ocean Avenue and other streets. The small homes are predominantly located in the west and southeast portions of the rezoning area. Many of these homes were built in the early 1900’s in the Victorian style, leading these detached home areas to be referred to as “Victorian Flatbush”. Portions of this neighborhood have been designated by the Landmarks Preservation Commission (LPC) as Historic Districts. These include the; Prospect Park South (1979), Albemarle and Kenmore Terraces (1978), Ditmas Park (1981) and Fiske Terrace – Midwood Park (2008) Historic Districts. The homes in these areas are typically two and a half to three stories in height.

The neighborhoods of Flatbush are well served by public transportation. The Q and B trains run north/south through the center of the rezoning area, generally between Marlborough Road and E 16th Street. The Q train makes local stops at Parkside Avenue, Church Avenue, Beverly Road, Cortelyou Road, Newkirk Avenue and Avenue H. The B train runs express on week days, and stops at Church Avenue and Newkirk Avenue. The last stop of the 2 and 5 trains at Flatbush and Nostrand avenues is located at the southeast corner of the rezoning area. North/south bus service is provided by New York City Transit’s 29, 68, 48, 49, 44, and 103 bus lines. East/west transit is provided by NYC Transit’s 16, 35, 23, 8, 6, and 11 buses. The Long Island Railroad’s Bay Ridge Freight Line is located south of Avenue H and is a portion of the rezoning area’s southern boundary.

Just outside of the rezoning area, at the intersection of Avenue H and Flatbush Avenue is a major, regional transportation and commercial node known locally as “The Junction”. The Junction remains a vibrant commercial area with a wide variety of commercial and mixed, commercial and residential uses. Also, churches, daycare centers and other community facilities dot the area. A large, enclosed mall was recently constructed immediately south of the rezoning area, just south of Avenue H. The mall is home to a Target, several restaurants and other shops.

Neighborhood Context: Detached Homes at East 17th Street and Foster Avenue in the R2 district. Neighborhood Context: Attached homes along East 23rd Street, between Ditmas Avenue and Newkirk Avenue in the R6 district. Neighborhood Context: Apartment buildings along Ocean Avenue in the R7-1 district.
Neighborhood Context: Detached Homes at East 17th Street and Foster Avenue in the R2 district. Neighborhood Context: Attached homes along East 23rd Street, between Ditmas Avenue and Newkirk Avenue in the R6 district. Neighborhood Context: Apartment buildings along Ocean Avenue in the R7-1 district.
Neighborhood Context: Flatbush Avenue Commercial Corridor between Albemarle Road and Regent Place in the C4-2 district. Neighborhood Context: Teardowns of Victorian detached homes in a R6 district along Stratford Road between Ditmas Avenue and Dorchester Road.
Neighborhood Context: Flatbush Avenue Commercial Corridor between Albemarle Road and Regent Place in the C4-2 district. Neighborhood Context: Teardowns of Victorian detached homes in a R6 district along Stratford Road between Ditmas Avenue and Dorchester Road.

Existing Zoning
Land Use & Existing Zoning
Land Use & Existing Zoning
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The rezoning area includes many zoning districts which reflect the diversity of the built character in the rezoning area. Zoning designations within the rezoning area have been in place since the current Zoning Resolution was adopted in 1961.
R1-2
R1-2 districts are mapped over 17% (30 full or partial blocks), in three areas, of the 180 block rezoning area corresponding to historic districts that contain large, Victorian-style homes. These areas are the Prospect Park South Historic District, Ditmas Park Historic District, and the area that contains a portion of the Fiske Terrace-Midwood Park Historic District.

R1-2 districts permit only single family detached homes with a minimum required lot area of 5,700 square feet and a sixty foot lot width. Residences require a minimum twenty foot front yard and two side yards are also required, totaling a minimum of twenty feet with a minimum of eight feet. R1-2 districts have a maximum floor area ratio (FAR) of 0.5 for residential and community facility uses. There is no maximum building height and building envelopes are controlled by the sky exposure plane. Each home is required to have at least one off-street parking space.

R3-1
A R3-1 district is mapped over 2% (4 full or partial blocks) of the 180 block rezoning area. The district is mapped generally south of Caton Avenue and north of Church Avenue, between Argyle Road and East 17th Street. R3-1 districts are low-density residential districts that allow detached and semi-detached one and two family homes. R3-1 districts have a minimum required lot area of 3,800 square feet for detached homes, and 1,700 square feet for semi-detached homes, with a minimum lot width of forty feet for detached homes, and eighteen feet for semi-detached homes. The district has a maximum building height of thirty-five feet and a maximum perimeter wall height of twenty-one feet. The maximum floor area ratio (FAR) is 0.5 for residential uses plus a 0.1 FAR attic allowance and 1.0 for community facility uses. In R3-1 districts, the minimum front yard is 15 feet. For detached homes, two side yards are required with a minimum width of five feet each and a minimum total width of 13 feet. For all other building types, one eight foot side yard is required.   One off-street parking space is required for each dwelling unit.

R3-2
Three R3-2 districts are mapped over 18% (33 full or partial blocks) of the 180 block rezoning area. The northernmost R3-2 district is mapped generally south of Beverly Road and north of Cortelyou Road, between Stratford Road and Ocean Avenue. Other R3-2 districts are mapped in Ditmas Park West and South Midwood. R3-2 districts are low density residential districts that allow for all housing types.  R3-2 districts have a minimum required lot area of 3,800 square feet for detached homes, and 1,700 square feet for all other housing types. Minimum lot width also varies by building type, with a minimum lot width of forty feet required for detached homes, and a minimum of eighteen feet required for other housing types. R3-2 districts have a maximum building height of thirty-five feet and a maximum perimeter wall height of twenty-one feet. The maximum floor area ratio (FAR) is 0.5 (plus 0.1 when using the attic allowance) for residential uses and 1.0 for community facility uses. In R3-2 districts, the minimum front yard is 15 feet. For detached homes, two side yards are required with a minimum width of five feet each and a minimum total width of 13 feet. For all other building types, one eight foot side yard is required. One off-street parking space is required for each dwelling unit.

R4
Two small R4 districts are currently mapped over 3% (5 full or partial blocks) of the 180 block rezoning area. The easternmost district is located south of Avenue H, north of the Long Island Railroad Bay Ridge freight line, and between East 17th Street and Ocean Avenue. The westernmost R4 district is bounded by Bedford Avenue, Campus Road, 23rd Street and Glenwood Road. R4 districts allow all types of housing. Detached homes in R4 districts require a minimum lot width of forty feet, a minimum lot area of 3,800 square feet and two side yards totaling thirteen feet, with each at least five feet wide. For all other building types the minimum lot width is eighteen feet, with a minimum lot area of 1,700 square feet. Both detached and other building types require a minimum of a ten foot front yard. In an R4 district the maximum floor area ratio (FAR) is 0.75 for residential uses, plus a twenty percent attic allowance, and 2.0 for community facility uses. Perimeter walls can be up to twenty-five feet in height with a maximum building height of thirty-five feet. For detached homes, two side yards are required with a minimum width of five feet each and a minimum total width of 13 feet. For all other building types, one eight foot side yard is required. One parking space is required per dwelling unit. R4 districts permit use of the infill zoning provisions at a maximum FAR of 1.35 at a height limit of 35 feet.

R5
A R5 district is currently mapped in 3% (6 full or partial blocks) of the 180 block rezoning area. This district is located south of Avenue H between East 17th Street and Coney Island Avenue. R5 districts permit all housing types. For detached buildings in R5 districts there is a minimum lot width of forty feet, and a minimum lot size of 3,800 square feet. For all other housing types, the minimum lot width is eighteen feet and the minimum lot size is 1,700 square feet. Ten foot front yards are required. Detached buildings are required to have two side yards that total thirteen feet in width, with each at least five feet wide. All other building types are required to have at least one side yard that is at least eight feet wide. The maximum floor area ratio (FAR) allowed in the district is 1.25 for residential uses, and 2.0 for community facility uses. The maximum building height is forty feet. The maximum street wallheight is 30 feet. Off-street parking is required for 85% of dwelling units. In addition, developments utilizing the infill zoning provisions have a maximum FAR of 1.65 at a height limit of 33 feet.

R6
R6 districts are currently mapped over 51% (92 full or partial blocks) of the total 180 blocks within the rezoning area. Generally, these areas are located along major streets, such as; Coney Island Avenue, Cortelyou Road, Newkirk Avenue, Flatbush Avenue south of Beverly Road; and also east of Flatbush Avenue. Residential and community facility uses (Use Groups 1-4) are permitted in R6 zoning districts, with a maximum floor area ratio (FAR) of up to 2.43 for residential uses and 4.8 for buildings containing community facility uses. There are no fixed height limits and building envelopes are governed by the sky exposure plane. Off-street parking is required for 70% of the dwelling units. Developers can also utilize the optional Quality Housing Program which permits up to 2.2 FAR with a base height of 30-45 feet and a maximum building height of fifty five feet on a narrow street (seventy five feet wide or less), and up to 3.0 FAR on a wide street, with a base height of 40-65 feet and a maximum building height of 70 feet. Under Quality Housing regulations, off-street parking is required is for 50% of the dwelling units. In R6 districts, if fewer than five spaces are required off-street parking is waived.

R7-1
Focused along Ocean Avenue, and cutting through the center of the rezoning area, an R7-1 district currently covers 33% (59 full or partial blocks) of the 180 block rezoning area. R7-1 zoning districts permit residential and community facility uses (Use Groups 1-4) with a maximum floor area ratio (FAR) of 3.44 for residential uses and 4.8 FAR for community facility uses. There are no fixed height limits and building envelopes are governed by the sky exposure plane. Off-street parking is required for 60% of the dwelling units. Developers can also utilize the Quality Housing Program, which permits 3.44 FAR on a narrow street with a base height of between 40 and 60 feet and a maximum building height of seventy five feet and 4.0 FAR on wide streets with a base height of between 40 and 65 feet, and a maximum building height of eighty feet. Off-street parking is required for 50% of the dwelling units under Quality Housing. In R7-1 districts, parking is waived if five spaces or less are required.

C4-2 and C4-3
C4 districts are currently mapped over 11% (20 full or partial blocks) of the 180 block rezoning area. C4 districts are regional commercial centers where uses, such as specialty and department stores, serve a larger area and generate more traffic than a neighborhood shopping area. These districts are located in two places within the rezoning area. The C4-2 district includes both sides of Church Avenue, between Ocean Avenue and Bedford Avenue, and Flatbush Avenue, between Church Avenue and Cortelyou Road.  The C4-3 district is centered on an area known locally as “The Junction” where Nostrand and Flatbush Avenues intersect. C4-2 and C4-3  districts permit residential uses with a maximum FAR of 2.43 (R6 equivalent), commercial uses with a maximum FAR of 3.0 and community facility uses with a maximum FAR of 4.8  C4-2 and C4-3 have no fixed height limits and building envelopes are governed by the sky exposure plane. C4-2 districts have a higher parking requirement than C4-3 districts, for commercial and community facility uses.

COMMERCIAL OVERLAYS
There are C1-3 and C2-3 Commercial Overlays mapped for local retail and service uses along Cortelyou Road, Flatbush Avenue, Church Avenue, Coney Island Avenue, Newkirk Avenue and Foster Avenue. C1 districts allow for typical local retail uses (Use Groups 5-6) where C2 districts meet broader shopping and service needs (Use Groups 5-9). Commercial uses in overlays within R1-R5 districts have a maximum FAR of 1.0 while overlays in R6 and higher districts have a maximum commercial FAR of 2.0. Commercial uses in mixed buildings are limited to the ground floor.  Parking requirements for most local retail uses, within the C1-3 and C2-3 districts, are one parking space for every 400 square feet of commercial use.

Quality Housing Study Area
Quality Housing Study Areas were established along with the introduction of Quality Housing regulations in the city in 1987, and aim to preserve the scale and character of areas zoned R6 and R7 but developed at lower densities, by limiting the use of the Quality Housing Program in several locations throughout the city. In Flatbush, the Quality Housing Study Area within the rezoning area is bounded by Church Avenue, Stratford Road, Beverly Road, Ocean Avenue, Foster Avenue and Coney Island Avenue.

Within the Quality Housing Study Area, Quality Housing regulations may not be used on lots occupied by a one-, two- or three- family detached or semi-detached home on a block where 70% or more of the block-fronts on both sides of the street are developed with such buildings. Development on these lots is limited to the R6 Height Factor regulations.


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