At the request of Community Board 2, local civic groups and elected officials, the Department of City Planning proposed contextual zoning map changes and a zoning text amendment for 99 blocks located within the Fort Greene and Clinton Hill neighborhoods including the Wallabout area of Brooklyn.
Under the current R6 zoning, construction of tall apartment buildings without a height limitation is permitted and has resulted in buildings that are inconsistent with the typical brownstone character of the neighborhood and historic districts. Much of the community’s concern stems from the massive, 22-acre Atlantic Yards basketball arena and high-rise development approved at the intersection of Flatbush and Atlantic avenues.
Residents fear that Atlantic Yards (which is not subject to city zoning) will encourage more high-rise development in the quiet, low-rise brownstone neighborhoods. Already, a number of out-of-scale, 11- to 13-story tower developments are proposed or have been constructed that are inconsistent with the low-rise, row house neighborhood character.
The proposed contextual zoning districts — R5B, R6B, R6A, R7A — would protect and preserve the predominantly brownstone character of the neighborhood’s residential core and provide opportunities for apartment house construction and inclusionary zoning incentives for affordable housing on Myrtle Avenue, Fulton Street and Atlantic Avenue within the rezoning area.
Specifically, it would allow six- to eight-story mixed-use apartment and commercial buildings along Atlantic Avenue, while allowing mixed retail and residential buildings along the commercial corridors of Myrtle Avenue and Fulton Street. The proposed rezoning was approved by the City Council in July 2007.