Author Topic: The development threat facing Jackson Heights is greater than we thought  (Read 9195 times)

Offline theplanesland

  • Mayor
  • *******
  • Posts: 571
What you want is a re-zoning if the neighborhood so the area gets down zoned from a R7 to a R4. This whole historic district is just a way to try to go around the NYC planning commission. There are a number of homes that have replaced their slate roofs and wood windows so you punish new homeowners who want to upgrade their inefficient homes. A slate roof could cost $50,000 for some these houses.

Wait, you want to downzone the neighborhood to eliminate six story buildings? I live in a six story building surrounded by other six story buildings. They've all been here since 1928. Jackson Heights is not just a neighborhood of little houses. An essential aspect of the neighborhood is that it is a neighborhood of lots of six story apartment buildings. R4 also requires off-street parking for every dwelling unit. That's ridiculous! In a 48-unit apartment building, they'd have to, what, install a parking lot? Build a garage? I don't get where you're coming from at all. R4 zoning for the neighborhood would completely shatter the character I and many others came to Jackson Heights to enjoy - a dense, walkable, transit-focused neighborhood of well-kept co-ops.

If you want a neighborhood that's all little houses, move to Bayside.

Offline abcdefghijk

  • Mayor
  • *******
  • Posts: 962
What kind of meaningful open space could be obtained by granting another four or five stories on top of what would already be too tall by many people.  What could we get by granting an additional four stories to the 13-story just south of B-way near the BQE.



Other neighborhoods in NYC have negotiated community theater spaces, art spaces, galleries etc with developers. Whereby these spaces are leased to the community for minimal to zero rent.  That's what we might be able to negotiate.

As well as plazas and open spaces.

It's important to be open and imaginative, LMANIACE  You never know what negotiation might get.  And then the ENTIRE neighborhood might benefit.

We are not the first neighborhood to be faced with these issues. It's been happening in NYC forever. Let's be smart and learn how previous NYC neighborhoods have benefited by negotiation.

Offline JK resident

  • Mayor
  • *******
  • Posts: 523
I don’t care about tall buildings going up replacing these wooden crummy houses. This group that wants to eliminate 15 story buildings does. Look at the picture posted. R4 could be zoned around the area where there are houses so they are not demolished to build a 15 story. Other areas could be zoned R5, R6, etc. This is the real goal that this group aims to achieve. This whole Landmarking is a red herring for wanting to down zone Jackso n Heights. Obviously existing buildings would be exempt from these zoning laws.

Offline abcdefghijk

  • Mayor
  • *******
  • Posts: 962
Eventually those parking lots will be developed.

It's simply a matter of time. 

The future beckons.

The community needs to think smart and get something out of it too...and not simply be reactionary. (Which is never the most intelligent way to deal with anything)

they very well might. and one of them will probably be developed into a four-tier parking structure to accommodate all the excess cars that are being discussed in other threads here. yes, sometime in the future cars will be obsolete and we will all get around on monorails and those futuristic buses that straddle four lanes of traffic, but i doubt that will happen in the next five years.  and sometimes, we need to actually address needs of the present day and not simply try to create the needs of the future.

Some folks are visionary.  Others are not.

Difference is the beauty of humanity.

Offline dssjh

  • Mayor
  • *******
  • Posts: 4592
is it time to revisit the visionary plan to close LaGuardia Airport and move all flights, jobs and infrastructure upstate to Stewart?

visionaries need to be persistent.

Offline dssjh

  • Mayor
  • *******
  • Posts: 4592
that last post was snarkier than i meant it to be, but look:

for decades, all over Manhattan, public plazas and "community spaces" have been:

a) built, then gradually taken out of public use
b) promised, then scaled down during the building process
c) never allowed to materialize because no one held developers accountable.

it's not just those things, either. developers have promised to install/maintain subway escalators that they actually own, and they stay "out of service" for years at a time (FiDi, 53rd street). it's a shell game and the public loses 99 percent of the time.

Offline JK resident

  • Mayor
  • *******
  • Posts: 523



So, we are going to allow the owner of the parking lot on 75th Street to build much higher if he builds us a community room or a very small park? Why not let that person just build what current zoning allows and not add to the congestion for some minimal neighborhood amenities that few would enjoy. There is nothing that will require they to build higher so all this is just speculation. How about letting the owner continuing to rent out the land for parking? This whole the neighborhood will now decide what and how tall every piece of land is used for sounds like socialism.

Offline dssjh

  • Mayor
  • *******
  • Posts: 4592
well, we already have laws in place dictating how land can be used. that's what this whole thread is about.

Offline abcdefghijk

  • Mayor
  • *******
  • Posts: 962
Difference of opinion is also part of the beauty of humanity.

Looking towards the dreams of the future, 10, 20, 30 years ahead... for the younger members of the Jackson Heights community...




 

Offline dssjh

  • Mayor
  • *******
  • Posts: 4592
on that, we agree. both parts.

i only hope that more of those younger neighbors choose to stick around -- all over NYC, people move in at 18-29, then bolt for the suburban enclaves where they came here from. sometimes it's financial frustration, sometimes the old "i can't raise my child in the city" (which i never understood).

and i'm certainly young enough that i'll be able to enjoy (or kvetch about) the changes for at least 25 years. likely will turn into a pumpkin within 30.
 
Difference of opinion is also part of the beauty of humanity.

Looking towards the dreams of the future, 10, 20, 30 years ahead... for the younger members of the Jackson Heights community...

Offline lmaniace

  • Council Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 491
Jackson Heights is a special place. It’s one of NYC’s densest neighborhoods, but it doesn’t feel crowded. That’s because it was well planned, with plenty of gardens around its buildings.

Here’s how you can help protect Jackson Heights from rampant development:
Send an email to NYC Landmark Preservation Commission's Executive Director Sarah Carroll at scarroll@lpc.nyc.gov, urging the LPC to expand the district.

Please put Expand the Jackson Heights Historic District in the subject line and include these points: 1) the proposed expansion’s buildings are just as high quality as the current district. 2) these distinct buildings and their generous open space are endangered by encroaching development. 3) We applied for the expansion in 2011 and it’s time for LPC to hold a hearing on this proposal. And don’t forget to thank her.

JHBG is working with elected officials and other organizations to expand the landmark district to include the almost all of area planned of Jackson Heights’ developer Edward A. McDougall and his Queensboro Corporation.

BTW, to those who've raised questions about our strategy, we are not talking about protecting wooden boxes. That is just silly. We are talking about protecting substantial brick well-designed buildings (left photo.) So please stop introducing red herrings into the discussion.

If folks are interested in a zone change or negotiating to get open space, why don't you folks work on this. Please keep us apprised and perhaps we can lend some help.
JHBG decided to work on expanding the historic district some time ago. We made the application for the expansion in 2011; had a meeting with LPC chair in 2015 and recently decided to step up campaign.

We work full-time at jobs to support ourselves and families. (I'm sending this message from my office, so shhhhh, no snitching.) We have no magic wand to make things happen, and if is not clear yet, we are not paid to do this. We are just regular folks working together to get things done for the community. We welcome you working with us. We welcome you working separately. I guess the key word is work. LOL.

All the best.

Offline JHResident

  • Citizen
  • ****
  • Posts: 101
As an example of what I fear will become more widespread, the first picture shows the type of house that lines the east side of 75th St, the other shows what has been built to replace similar houses on the west side.  While the first is not especially historically significant, this type of house defined the parts of Jackson Heights and Elmhurst that border Roosevelt Avenue.  They are all but gone in Elmhurst and rapidly being torn down in JH.

Offline petster

  • Council Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 473
I really see this development as ruining the whole fabric of the neighborhood.  Jackson Heights was never designed for such density and denies us  light and air ( not to mention increased traffic, noise and garbage). That,  plus the fact that most of the new construction is ill conceived, cheap and without consideration to the architectural history of the community.  The theatre that was torn down could have most certainly  been incorporated into  the Target/ housing that is going up.  Its' exterior and art deco interior could have been  preserved, thus representing something interesting and in line with neighborhood stylistically.   Something like this would never happen in Brooklyn where most  original structures are capitalized on and preserved at the same time. 

Offline theplanesland

  • Mayor
  • *******
  • Posts: 571
I really see this development as ruining the whole fabric of the neighborhood.  Jackson Heights was never designed for such density and denies us  light and air ( not to mention increased traffic, noise and garbage). That,  plus the fact that

Jackson Heights absolutely was designed for density! That's why we're full of six story apartment buildings and we have FIVE subway lines serving the major interchange in our neighborhood. We are a dense, urban neighborhood. Now, we're all frustrated with the MTA, but we have a dense commercial fabric and multiple transit options for dense living in a way that Brooklyn neighborhoods served by a single occasional F train which shuts down on weekends just don't have.

There are a million more people living in NYC than there used to be, and if we don't build places for them to live, we'll become San Francisco, where working class people have to live 60 miles out of town because all of the in-city apartments have become utterly unaffordable. Jackson Heights has the bones and the resources to welcome newcomers.

Offline JK resident

  • Mayor
  • *******
  • Posts: 523
As an example of what I fear will become more widespread, the first picture shows the type of house that lines the east side of 75th St, the other shows what has been built to replace similar houses on the west side.  While the first is not especially historically significant, this type of house defined the parts of Jackson Heights and Elmhurst that border Roosevelt Avenue.  They are all but gone in Elmhurst and rapidly being torn down in JH.

Wait a minute. This street is not even included on the proposed expansion! You admit that this house is not important, so why are trying to protect it. The new homes built by Manhasset homes is what the current zoning allows in a R5 area. You should try to advocate for a R5A district. The new contextual designation of R5A or R7A allows development but only if it co forms with the surrounding buildings. This is what the group really want. Again what the group really wants is to down zone Jackson Heights and not preserve anything historic.

Jackson Heights Life