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Projects & Proposals > Brooklyn > Sheepshead Bay Printer Friendly Version
Sheepshead Bay Rezoning - Approved!
Existing Context and Zoning
Overview | Existing Context and Zoning | Proposed Zoning

The community of Sheepshead Bay in southern Brooklyn includes Plumb Beach, part of which was formerly an island named for its indigenous beach plums and referred to as Plumb Island. Plumb Beach developed into a beach resort and bungalow colony in the early 1900’s.

Sheepshead Bay Existing Zoning Map
Existing Zoning Map
PDF Document View a larger image


2801 Emmons Avenue - New Construction Outside of Rezoning Area
2801 Emmons Avenue - New Construction Outside of Rezoning Area
In 1973, the City Planning Commission established the Special Sheepshead Bay District (SSBD) including a portion of Plumb Beach, to promote and strengthen the unique character of this waterfront area as a prime location for water-related commercial and recreational development. It also sought to encourage housing development in suitable areas, the provision of open space and other amenities as part of that development, and  improvements in vehicular and pedestrian circulation throughout the district. PDF Document (See New York City Zoning Resolution Section 94-00).

The SSBD encompasses an approximately 20-block area, which extends along Emmons Avenue and the adjacent side streets from Sheepshead Bay Road on the west to Knapp Street on the east. The underlying zoning, R5 with C2-2 commercial overlays, permits low-density residential development and a range of retail, service, community facility and office uses. The SSBD contains eight subareas (Areas A through H) with regulations governing development and permitted uses for each area. PDF Document View a map of the SSBD subareas.

The Sheepshead Bay/Plumb Beach rezoning area is a low-density residential community. Most residences are one-and two-family detached and semi-detached homes. The area is currently experiencing a surge of as-of-right residential development characterized by three-and four-story apartment buildings on Emmons Avenue, immediately to the south of the rezoning area, and new townhouses on the side streets north of Emmons Avenue. These new developments have replaced several bungalows and many of the former swimming pool clubs and other commercial uses along Emmons Avenue. However, a significant concentration of bungalows north of Emmons Avenue between East 27th Street on the west and Ford Street on the east remain to this day.  The existing R5 zoning permits multifamily structures that could, over time, result in a substantial change in the neighborhood's character.

2775 Brown Street
Out of Character Development in Rezoning Area
2775 Brown Street  March 2004 – Out of Character Development in Rezoning Area 2775 Brown Street September 2005 – Out of Character Development in Rezoning Area
March 2004
September 2005

The rezoning area is zoned R5 with C2-2 overlays along Emmons Avenue. Portions of the rezoning area are also located within the SSBD.
The R5 zoning district is a low-density, general residence district in which all housing types are permitted, including garden apartments, row houses and detached homes.  Buildings may be built up to a maximum floor area ratio (FAR) of 1.25 with a maximum street wall height of 35 feet and a maximum building height of 40 feet.  Minimum lot width and lot area depend upon the housing configuration. Detached structures requiring a 40-foot lot width and at least 3,800 square feet of lot area and other housing types requiring lots at least 18 feet wide and a minimum of 1,700 square feet. One off-street parking space is required per dwelling unit or 85 percent of dwelling units if group parking is provided.

The underlying R5 regulations are modified by the regulations of the SSBD.  Three blocks of the proposed rezoning area are located in Area F of the SSBD which has a maximum residential FAR of 2.0. In addition, in Area F,  portions of buildings within 75 feet of Emmons cannot exceed three stories, or 35 feet, whichever is less. Beyond the 75 feet in Area F, buildings may rise to six stories or 75 feet, whichever is less.

Small portions of five blocks of the rezoning area are located in Area G of the SSBD which has a maximum residential FAR of 1.25 and a maximum building height of three stories or 35 feet, whichever is less.

All of the existing C2-2 overlays are within the SSBD. One block  between  East 29th Street and Nostrand Avenue is located in Area F of the special district which limits commercial uses to Use Group 6 (local retail and service uses). The remaining five blocks are located in Area G which limits commercial uses to Use Groups 6,7,8 and 9 (local retail and service establishments intended to serve a wider neighborhood). The maximum permitted commercial FAR is 1.0.



Overview | Existing Context and Zoning | Proposed Zoning


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Brief explanations of terms in green italics can be viewed by clicking on the term. Words and phrases followed by an asterisk (*) are defined terms in the Zoning Resolution, primarily in Section 12-10. Consult the Zoning Resolution for the official and legally binding definitions of these words and phrases.
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