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Projects & Proposals > Bronx > Third Avenue/Tremont Avenue Rezoning Printer Friendly Version
Third Avenue/Tremont Avenue Rezoning - Approved!
Existing Zoning & Context
Overview | Existing Zoning & Context | Proposed Zoning | Public Review


The study area encompasses approximately one mile of both Third Avenue and Tremont Avenue, which form important crossroads in the central Bronx.  Northeast of the study area is Belmont, a neighborhood residential  and retail area known for its regional specialty food and restaurants.  Bronx Park, including the zoological park, is a few blocks to the east of the study area.  Southeast of the study area are Tremont Park and Crotona Park, a 15 and 127.5 acre, respectively, regional Public Park.  To the south of the study area is the Cross-Bronx Expressway and the Bathgate Industrial Park. To the west is the Tremont community and Metro-North rail tracks.  St. Barnabas Hospital is a major institution in the heart of the Third Avenue corridor.  

The area is well served by public transportation.  There are two Metro-North stations within or adjacent to the proposed rezoning area, Fordham station and Tremont station, and the proposed rezoning area is well served by  bus.While there are no subway stops within the proposed rezoning area, the D/B, 4, 2, and 5 lines are all one bus transfer away.  The Fordham Road Select Bus Service is also nearby, operating as one of the main east-west routes for public transportation through the Bronx.

The built character differs according to the subdistricts of Third Avenue, Tremont Avenue, and the neighborhood area to the west.

Third Avenue
The current zoning along Third Avenue was established in 1961 when the Third Avenue elevated “8” train ran along the corridor.   Despite demolition of the elevated train in 1973, the zoning has remained unchanged; consequently, the Third Avenue corridor is primarily developed with single-story automotive and warehouse uses.   Many of these uses are inactive in the off hours, which disrupts the continuity of the surrounding residential streets.  There are also numerous underutilized properties within the study area, such as open parking lots and vacant land.  St. Barnabas Hospital is located on Third Avenue at East 184th Street.  East 180th Street and Third Avenue are notable as a retail node. 

Tremont Avenue
The Tremont Avenue corridor is considered the “downtown” of Community District 6. Once a central shopping and theater district with a street car running down Tremont Avenue, the shopping corridor remains healthy today, serving the current population with a variety of discount retail stores and restaurants.  However, several multistory theaters and office buildings have active retail uses on the ground floor with vacant upper stories.  Many single-story retail establishments line the street, with some multi-story buildings at major intersections and a few mixed residential and retail buildings.  Most of the corridor is currently zoned for residential use with  local commercial on the ground floor.

Neighborhood area west of Third Avenue
The neighborhood west of Third Avenue is a stable residential community with a mix of four to six story apartment buildings with several blocks of row house development.  In the past few years new apartment buildings have been constructed in this area, some of them significantly taller and out-of-context with the surrounding buildings.


Existing Zoning
Land Use and Existing Zoning Map
PDF Document View a larger image

The Third Avenue corridor is primarily zoned C8-3 with a six block area at the southern end zoned M1-4.  The Tremont Avenue corridor is primarily zoned R7-1 with a C1-4 commercial overlay.  The west end of Tremont Avenue has several blocks of C4-4 zoning.  The residential area west of Third Avenue is zoned R7-1.  The various zoning designations and their locations are described below.  PDF Document View the zoning comparison chart.

C8-3
The C8-3 district is currently mapped along Third Avenue from 189th Street, in the north, down near Tremont Avenue, in the south, containing part of twenty-three blocks.  The zoning is reflective of the elevated train that was present along the Third Avenue corridor until 1973.  The C8-3 district allows commercial and community facility uses in Use Groups 4-14 and 16. The most prevalent uses in C8 districts are automotive and heavy commercial uses such as auto-repair, warehouses, gas stations, and car washes.  Residential uses are not permitted. There is no maximum building height, and the building envelope is regulated by the sky exposure plane.  The maximum commercial floor area ratio (FAR) in C8-3 districts is 2.0.  Community facilities are permitted an FAR of up to 6.5.  Off-street parking requirements vary with the use, but generally most uses require one accessory parking space per 1,000 square feet of commercial space.

C4-4
The C4-4 district is mapped along Tremont Avenue from Webster Avenue, in the west, to Third Avenue, in the east, containing part of eight blocks.  C4-4 districts are medium-density commercial districts which allow for Use Groups 1-6, 8-10, and 12, which permits commercial office and retail, residential, and community facility uses. Commercial uses have a maximum FAR of 3.4, residential uses have a maximum FAR of 4.0, and community facilities have a maximum FAR of 6.5.  Residential uses have an R7-1 zoning equivalent which allows for both Quality Housing program and height factor development (see R7-1).  For commercial and community facility uses, there are no height limits, and building heights and setbacks are governed by the sky exposure plane.  The residential parking requirement provides one parking space for 50% of the number of residential units.  The commercial and community facility parking requirements vary with use.

R7-1
The R7-1 district is the largest district, located throughout the rezoning and consisting of at least a portion of 51 of the 75 zoning blocks.  The R7-1 district is a height factor district that allows residential uses to a maximum floor area ratio (FAR) of 3.44 and community facility uses up to 4.8 FAR.  There is no maximum building height, and the building envelope is regulated by the sky exposure plane.  The optional Quality Housing regulations allow residential development a maximum permitted FAR of 4.0 on a wide street and 3.44 on a narrow street.  Under Quality Housing rules, for a wide street, the base height of the building at the street must be between 40-65 feet then must set back from the street before rising to a maximum building height of 80 feet. For a narrow street, the base height of the building at the street must be between 40-60 feet before rising to a maximum building height of 75 feet after the setback.  Off-street parking is required for 60% of the residential units (50% for Quality Housing developments).

M1-1
The M1-1 district is currently mapped within a single zoning block within the rezoning area.  M1-1 districts permit Use Groups 4-14, and 16-17, which include light manufacturing and industrial uses, many commercial uses and certain community facility uses.  Residential uses are not permitted.  The district has a 30-foot street wall height limit, before an initial setback of 15 feet on a wide street (streets greater than 75 feet), and 20 feet on a narrow street (streets less than 75 feet).  There is no maximum building height, and the building envelope is regulated by the sky exposure plane.  M1-1 permits a maximum FAR of 1.0 for manufacturing uses; however, buildings containing community facility uses are permitted up to 2.4 FAR.  Off-street parking requirements vary with the use, but manufacturing or semi-industrial uses require 1 space per 1,000 square feet of floor area or 1 space per 3 employees whichever is greater.

M1-4
The M1-4 district is currently mapped within a six block area at the southernmost portion of the rezoning area, including Third Avenue, south of East Tremont Avenue, and areas to the west.  M1-4 districts permit Use Groups 4-14, and 16-17, which include light manufacturing and industrial uses, many commercial uses and certain community facility uses.  Residential uses are not permitted.  There is no maximum building height, and the building envelope is regulated by the sky exposure plane.  M1-4 permits a maximum FAR of 2.0 for manufacturing uses; however, buildings containing community facility uses are permitted up to a 6.5 FAR.  Off-street parking is not required in this zoning district.

Commercial Overlays
Commercial overlays currently include C1 and C2 districts along retail corridors and nodes, such as along the Tremont Avenue and 183rd Street corridors and the 180th/Third Avenue and 188th/Webster Avenue nodes.  The C1 and C2 overlays are mapped in residence districts and serve the local retail needs (e.g., grocery stores, restaurants) of the surrounding residential neighborhood.  C2 districts permit a slightly larger range of service uses (e.g., funeral homes, repair services).  The maximum floor area in both C1-4 and C2-4 districts is 2.0 FAR with commercial uses limited to the R7 districts, though commercial uses are limited to the first floor when residences are located above.  Parking requirements vary by use, but, in general, commercial uses are required to provide 1 space per 1,000 square feet of floor area.

Residential buildings, such as this one on 176th Street, have had to go through BSA to build in an M1 zone.
Residential buildings, such as this one on 176th Street, have had to go through BSA to build in an M1 zone.
 
The outdated zoning is limiting the development potential along Third Avenue, such as this building on the 180th Street and Third Avenue intersection.
The outdated zoning is limiting the development potential along Third Avenue, such as this building on the 180th Street and Third Avenue intersection.
 
Stable neighborhoods are adjacent to the Third Avenue and Tremont Avenue corridors, including these homes along Bathgate Avenue.
Stable neighborhoods are adjacent to the Third Avenue and Tremont Avenue corridors, including these homes along Bathgate Avenue.




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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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