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Projects & Proposals > Staten Island > S. I. Growth Management Printer Friendly Version
Staten Island Growth Management - Approved!
Residential Regulation Changes

Overview
Residential Regulation Changes - Approved August 12th, 2004
Commercial Overlay Boundary Changes/Eliminations - Approved October 11th, 2005
LDGMA Follow-Up Text Amendments - Approved December 8th, 2005
Commercial Regulation Changes - Approved December 21st, 2005
Commercial Rezonings - Approved December 21st, 2005
Work in Progress


Residential Regulation Changes | Zoningl Illustrations




Background
On August 12, 2004 the City Council adopted the Lower Density Growth Management Text Amendments (N 040414 ZRY - Read the PDF Document CPC Report), as proposed by Mayor Bloomberg's Staten Island Growth Management Task Force.The new rules apply to any development in residential districts within a designated "Lower Density Growth Management Area". Primarily affecting R1 through R5 residential zoning districts, the new regulations maintain and enhance existing neighborhood character by reducing the density of new residential development, and by ensuring better quality site design. Requirements for yards and open spaces between homes and for off-street parking increase, and stricter guidelines are imposed for developments along private roads.

Simultaneous with adoption of the new zoning text, the entire borough of Staten Island was designated New York City's first "Lower Density Growth Management Area", a designation that could apply to other communities facing similar challenges: extensive new home construction -- often at odds with prevailing neighborhood character -- limited or distant mass transit, and high car ownership. In September, 2004,
Throgs Neck in Bronx Community District 10 became the second such area.


Summary of New Regulations
The Lower Density Growth Management regulations are intended to stop inappropriate development and manage future growth consistent with the capacity of the borough's infrastructure. The zoning changes apply to yards and open space, parking and related provisions, and to private road developments:
  • New Yard, Open Space and Landscaping Requirements: Because Staten Island lacks the regular street grid that characterizes other parts of the city, many of the lots on Staten Island are large enough to develop with multiple buildings, but the former zoning regulations failed to ensure that these buildings were adequately spaced or had sufficient yards. New regulations for corner lots ensure that usable yards will be provided in the future. A tightening of the regulations for homes adjacent to corner buildings provides full 30-foot rear yards for these homes. New regulations limit the number of homes that can be built behind other homes and increase the open space required between new and existing neighboring homes. All homes are restricted from providing parking within the 30-foot rear yard. Additionally, landscaped buffers are required between any group parking lot and an adjacent zoning lot and street trees are required in all new developments, in accordance with Department of Parks and Recreation standards.

  • New Parking and Related Requirements: With an increase in population of nearly 20% since 1990, Staten Islanders are coping with a volume of cars that is taxing the capacity of local streets. The borough has the highest car ownership in the city, yet the historic regulation of one parking space for each housing unit provided insufficient parking, resulting in fewer and fewer on-street parking spaces. Therefore the new regulations increase the parking requirements: a new, one-family home requires two on-site parking spaces instead of one, and a two-family home requires three parking spaces instead of two. Required parking spaces are not be permitted in the front yard, thus freeing up driveways and on-street parking for guest and visitor parking. An increased requirement for driveway widths and distances between driveways ensures that adequate space for parking is provided.

  • New Bulk (Building Size and Form) and Lot Size Regulations: To accommodate increased parking requirements, new regulations encourage the construction of garages at street level. Increased minimum lot widths, a prohibition against steeply pitched driveways, a higher perimeter wall height and a floor area exemption for garages provide developers up to 300 square feet of "free space" for a one-car garage and up to 500 square feet for a two-car garage. In addition, a new attic design regulation encourages the traditional pitched roofline design found on many older Staten Island homes, rather than the more flat-roofed homes built in recent years. The overall height limit of 35 feet remains in place.

  • New Requirements for Private Road Developments: All residential projects on private roads are now governed by the same yard and setback requirements as those on public streets. No longer will residential developments on private roads be built without rear yards, or with inadequate front yards. In addition to requiring more on-site parking, parking spaces on the private roads no longer count toward meeting the parking requirement, freeing up more on-street spaces for visitors. Additional planting strips in the fronts of houses, and wider buffers between the private roads and other developments contribute toward improving the quality of development. A required landscaped buffer between rear yards and public streets is required, and provides an incentive for developers to locate the front yard facing the public street. Private road developments are also required to meet NYC Department of Transportation public street standards for street lighting, signage and crosswalks.

Residential Rule Changes | Zoning Illustrations

Overview
Residential Regulation Changes - Approved August 12th, 2004
Commercial Overlay Boundary Changes/Eliminations - Approved October 11th, 2005
LDGMA Follow-Up Text Amendments - Approved December 8th, 2005
Commercial Regulation Changes - Approved December 21st, 2005
Commercial Rezonings - Approved December 21st, 2005
Work in Progress



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