The Department of City Planning
is proposing zoning changes to promote a vibrant mix of housing, light
industry, commercial enterprises
and cultural activities in Hunters Point, a neighborhood located in Long
Island City between the Citigroup office tower at Court Square and Queens
West on the East River waterfront. The proposal would create opportunities
for about 300 housing units in new buildings that will blend into the
established neighborhood scale. While continuing to sustain light manufacturing
development in the area, the zoning changes would also allow a broad
range of commercial uses, including stores, restaurants, artist studios,
small theaters and custom printers more widely throughout the neighborhood.
Fostering new residential and mixed-use development in Hunters Point
would bring life and foot traffic to this unique, transit-rich, culturally
View of Hunters
Point looking southwesterly along Jackson Avenue.
In the Heart of Hunters Point: a westerly view of 47th Avenue with the United Nations visible in the distance.
Mixed-use development has characterized Hunters Point since the middle
of the nineteenth century when the area became a major rail transportation
hub. Recently, the neighborhood has become known for its cultural resources,
such as the P.S. 1 Contemporary Art Center, and for its entrepreneurial
activities including building contracting services, custom manufacturing
and graphics concerns.
The Department has developed a fine-grained zoning strategy that would
enhance the distinctive characteristics and qualities of Hunters Point.
In addition to promoting a dynamic mix of uses, zoning controls would
set height limits so that new buildings will fit in with their surroundings.
New residential and mixed-use development sensitive to the existing built
environment will strengthen Hunters Point’s sense of place, enhance
its street vitality, and contribute to the city’s plans for creating
a successful business district in the Long Island City core centered
around Queens Plaza and Court Square. The neighborhood’s fortified
identity and lively streetscapes would also help to link Hunters Point
and the LIC core to the waterfront and the dynamic development occurring
at Queens West.
pictorial overview of the Hunters Point rezoning (PDF)
Hunters Point Subdistrict Rezoning Area
The area proposed for rezoning is located in the southwest portion of
Queens Community District 2 and covers approximately 43 blocks of the
Hunters Point neighborhood in Long Island City. The rezoning area encompasses
the existing mixed-use Hunters Point Subdistrict of the Special Long
Island City Mixed Use District and several adjoining blocks and lots.
The proposed rezoning area is bounded by 2nd, 5th and 11th streets on
the west, 47th Avenue, 46th Road and 44th Drive on the north, 23rd Street,
Jackson Avenue and the Sunnyside Yard on the east, and Borden Avenue
and the Queens Midtown Tunnel on the south.
On February 9, 2004, the Department of City Planning
certified and referred out the Uniform Land Use Review Procedure (ULURP)
applications for zoning map and text amendments for the Hunters Point
Subdistrict. The applications were referred to Community Board 2 for
a 60-day review period. During this time, the Board held a public hearing
and issued a favorable recommendation with conditions/modifications.
Following the Community Board’s review period, the Queens Borough
President also issued a recommendation to approve the plan with conditions/modifications.
In response to comments received during the public review process, the
Department of City Planning revised portions of the proposal on June
15, 2004. The modifications include: 1) removal of the 100-foot deep
blockfront on 5th Street between 46th Avenue and Anable Basin from the
rezoning area; 2) changing the zoning from M1-4/R7A to M1-4/R6B on two
blockfronts along the westerly side of 11th Street between 45th and 46th
avenues to thereby reducing the allowed residential density 4.0 FAR to
2.0 FAR to reflect the built character of these blockfronts; and 3) changing
the zoning from M1-4/R7A to M1-4/R6A on the easterly blockfront on 11th
Street between 45th Road and 46th Avenue and on the northerly blockfront
of 45th Avenue 100 feet west 21st Street, thereby reducing the allowable
density from 4.0 FAR to 3.0 FAR.
On June 23, 2004, the City Planning Commission approved the revised applications
for zoning map and text amendments (read the CPC Reports: map
change and text amendment).
On August 12, the City Council approved the Department’s rezoning
proposal for Hunters Point.