Review Begins for Far West Village Rezoning

The city’s Planning Commission voted Monday to certify zoning changes for six blocks in the far West Village, beginning a process that will take about six months to complete. The local community board and Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer’s office will issue non-binding advisory opinions, and then City Planning and the City Council will vote on the rezoning.

The rezoning would affect buildings between Washington and Greenwich streets, from West 10th to West 12th streets and is a victory for preservationists, limiting the heights of new construction and discouraging hotel and dorm development. The move may hinder the development of a hotel at 145 Perry Street, which was approved by the Landmarks Preservation Committee in 2008 to be 78 feet.

“This is a great victory and the culmination of a two-year campaign by this community to get a much-needed rezoning for the Far West Village,” said Andrew Berman, executive director of the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation, in a statement.  “The Far West Village needs and deserves this protection, as the current zoning encourages out-of-scale commercial overdevelopment.”

City Planning first committed to the rezoning in November, following a letter-writing campaign in April 2008 and the support of local elected officials in September.

“Now we must be vigilant to ensure that unscrupulous developers do not seek to ‘beat the clock’ and skirt the new zoning rules with illegal work, and we will push the Community Board, the City Planning Commission, and the City Council to vote on the proposal as soon as possible,” said Mr. Berman.