The rezoning area is located in Community District 1 and directly south of Community District 2. It is directly south of the Hudson Square neighborhood, to the west of Chinatown, and adjacent to Hudson River Park. Because Canal and West streets form the northern and western boundaries of the neighborhood, Northern Tribeca feels separate from these neighborhoods. Buildings in the rezoning area range from four to five story loft buildings with narrow street frontages to eight to ten story buildings with full lot coverages. Historically, these buildings were attractive to working artists who valued the large floor plates of the warehouse buildings and the floor-through character of the loft buildings. Today, many of the four to five story buildings have been converted to residential use from the third floor and above under as-of-right zoning.
The rezoning area lies completely within the existing Special Tribeca Mixed Use District. The Special Tribeca Mixed Use (TMU) District is roughly bounded by Murray Street to the south, Greenwich and West Streets to the West, Canal Street to the North, and Broadway and West Broadway on the east. The Special TMU is divided into six subareas, A1, A2, A3, A4, B1, and B2. The North Tribeca rezoning area includes Area B1, B2, and A4.
Area A4 (four blocks between West and Washington Streets and Hubert and Watts Streets) was created and rezoned in 2006 from an M1-5 to C6-3A and C6-2A districts. This rezoning reflects the neighborhood’s transformation from manufacturing uses to residential uses. The C6-3A and C6-2A allows residential use and ground floor retail as-of-right and permits a 6.5 floor area ratio (FAR) in the C6-3A and a 5.5 FAR in the C6-2A. The C6-3A and C6-2A districts in the Special TMU have unique bulk envelopes. Both districts have a street wall requirement of 60 to 70 feet. The maximum building height in the C6-3A is 150 feet and 110 feet in the C6-2A. These building heights and street walls do not apply to properties in designated LPC Historic Districts.
Areas B1 and B2 in northern Tribeca are currently zoned M1-5, which permits manufacturing or commercial uses with a maximum 5.0 FAR. Community facilities are permitted up to a maximum 6.5 FAR. Residential use is restricted, which goes against the recent development trends in the neighborhood. The existing M1-5 zoning district is a non-contextual district which was established in 1961. It does not require a consistent street wall and does not have height restrictions, which does not reflect much of the built fabric in northern Tribeca. Instead, the height is governed by the sky exposure plane which begins at a front wall height of 60 feet.
The existing Special TMU does not permit dwelling use in enlargements and ground floor retail is limited throughout the area. There are also unique requirements on dwelling size in residential conversions such as a minimum unit size of 2,000 square feet. In addition, for Areas A1 and A3, there are existing use group restrictions limiting retail establishment size and only permitting some light manufacturing uses. Table 1 summarizes the existing zoning. View the zoning comparison chart.