NYC Land Use Bulletin- City Planning Commission Approves Two Major Zoning Initiatives



Mandatory Inclusionary Housing (MIH) and Zoning for Quality and Affordability (ZQA) Initiatives Designed to Advance Mayor de Blasio’s Housing New York Plan

By Richard Barth, Senior Advisor for Land Use and Housing Strategies

On February 3, the City Planning Commission approved two major zoning initiatives – Mandatory Inclusionary Housing (MIH), and Zoning for Quality and Affordability (ZQA).  Both are designed to advance the Mayor’s Housing New York Plan to produce and preserve 200,000 units of affordable housing over the next 10 years.  Each of the zoning amendments passed by a vote of nine to three, with one abstention. The City Council now has 50 days to consider these initiatives. They have scheduled public hearings on these changes for February 9 and 10.

Capalino has written extensively on both initiatives. For a summary of the MIH and ZQA proposals and key provisions, read our blog post City Planning Begins Public Review for Mandatory Inclusionary Housing and Two Major Zoning Initiatives.

“Our ambition is to make all of New York a better place to live…”

“Today marks the culmination of many months of research, outreach and hard work by the amazing City Planning staff, working closely with our colleagues at the Department of Housing Development and Preservation and so many others in city government, to support Mayor de Blasio’s extraordinary affordable housing plan through smarter zoning,” said City Planning Commission (CPC) Chairman Carl Weisbrod at today’s CPC vote to approve the text amendments.  

“If we are going to address our profound housing challenges and maintain the greatness of our city and its neighborhoods, we need our zoning to be more flexible and responsive. Our ambition is to make all of New York a better place to live, to preserve what works and improve what doesn’t.” Read Carl Weisbrod’s full remarks in DCP’s press release here.

The text amendments were approved with the following modifications.

Mandatory Inclusionary Housing (MIH)

The new Mandatory Inclusionary Housing would require new residential developments to allocate 25 to 30 percent of the building floor area for affordable housing in areas to be rezoned in the future, and in conjunction with certain special permits and other discretionary approvals.

At adoption, the Commission modified the proposed BSA special permit provisions of the program to enhance the important role HPD will play in the BSA’s review of hardship applications

Zoning for Quality and Affordability (ZQA)

This citywide text amendment is a set of targeted zoning changes designed to support the creation of affordable and senior housing by rationalizing zoning to reduce unnecessary cost and removing obstacles.

The three broad categories of the proposal include:

At today’s adoption, certain modifications were made, including requiring a CPC special permit for all long-term care facilities in single family districts, rather than allowing them as-of-right.

Capalino is monitoring the most recent developments of the City’s housing and zoning proposals and we will continue to update you on the progress of these zoning changes as they are considered by the City Council.

Our housing and land use team can assist you in navigating these changes and assessing implications for your existing and proposed projects. We specialize in helping our clients secure City and State zoning and land use approvals and work with market rate and affordable housing developers and not-for-profits to identify and evaluate housing and development opportunities, crafting creative strategies and solutions to achieve their goals. Understanding the MIH and ZQA are essential to successful plans in these areas.

Where Can I Get More Information?

Please contact our team of experts with any questions about the initiatives and opportunities for your site or development.

Richard BarthRichard Barth

Senior Advisor for Housing + Real Estate Strategies

About Richard

Claire AltmanClaire-Altman

Director of Affordable & Supportive Housing Development Services

About Claire

Christopher CollinsChris Collins

Executive Vice President of Land Use + Real Estate Strategies

About Chris

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