Today, in the culmination of a year-and-a-half-long struggle by neighborhood residents and preservation groups, the City Council voted to approve the Far West Side down-zoning, effectively putting the kibosh on developers’ plans to immediately erect large-scale buildings in the area.

Spearheaded by the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation, the rezoning takes effect immediately in the neighborhood bounded by Hortatio Street to the north, Washington Street to the east, Morton Street to the south, and West Street to the, err, west.

The rezoning will put a stop to the ongoing erection of high-rise towers the Village has been seeing more of in the last few years, allowing only construction that is on the same scale as the existing neighborhood. (For an interesting read on down-zoning, check out this article in today’s New York Times.

Two exceptions to the rezoning remain: the Superior Ink Factory, at Bethune and West streets, where Related Companies is slated to build a residential high-rise; and the Whitehall Storage building, at 150 Charles Street, where the Witkoff Group is planning a 175-foot-tall residential building.

The city’s Landmarks Preservation Commission has also set a hearing for discussion of expanding the nearby historic district for Oct. 18.
-Matthew Grace