City Council Leaves South Village Unprotected from Out-of-Scale Development


In a move that disappointed and angered South Village residents, the City Council’s Subcommittee on Zoning and Franchises voted today to approve rezoning of the Hudson Square District without providing any landmark protections for the South Village neighborhood that the City’s own study notes will be endangered by the rezoning. The City Council will vote next week on this matter, and it is a near certainty that they will ratify the decision of the zoning subcommittee.

Perhaps in an effort to appear responsive to the concerns from the threatened historic neighborhoods, the City Council has secured a commitment from the Landmarks Preservation Commission to consider landmarking areas north of Houston Street sometime before the end of the year. While this could be good news for neighbors to the north – who have been faced with NYU’s rapacious development plans – it leaves the southern part of the South Village, which directly abuts the newly rezoned district, without any protections.

The Landmarks Preservation Commission has also promised to “survey” the southern part of the South Village in the coming year, with an eye toward possible landmarking at a future date. But, as many have pointed out, by the time the Landmark Preservation Commission gets around to landmarking the South Village there may be no landmarks left to preserve.