The map in Ozone Park could soon be changing to allow the community to welcome new development and reinforce its “residential character.”
The Department of City Planning (DCP) proposed a rezoning of the neighborhood in response to the community’s concerns that the existing zoning doesn’t “closely reflect established building patters,” according to the DCP.
Community Boards 9 and 10, local civic organizations and elected officials were among those who voiced their concerns.
“Now more than ever, Ozone Park demands a smarter and more flexible blueprint that protects the character of the residential parts of the neighborhood and strengthens the commercial districts to stimulate economic development,” said Councilmember Eric Ulrich.
The proposed rezoning area is bounded by Rockaway Boulevard, Atlantic Avenue and 101st Avenue to the north; the Van Wyck Expressway and Lefferts Boulevard to the east; the Belt Parkway to the south; and the Brooklyn borough line to the west.
Currently, the area consists of three residential zones which have been left unchanged since 1961. This existing zoning has allowed the development of three-to-four story, multi-family attached houses and apartment buildings.
DCP said this layout does not reflect the “scale and character” of the desired one-and-two family homes, both attached and separate, that are typically found within Ozone Park. Existing zoning additionally doesn’t distinguish the scale of buildings along most of the area’s commercial corridors and prohibits development of larger buildings.
The proposed rezoning is intended to “reinforce neighborhood character and established building patterns,” direct new housing opportunities, allow for a mix of uses to major corridors and prevent commercial encroachment into residential areas.
“As someone who was born and raised in Ozone Park, it will give me great pleasure to participate in the public review process and to vote on its final approval when it reaches the City Council,” Ulrich said.
Community Boards 9 and 10 are now reviewing the proposal, which will also be reviewed by the borough president and the borough board. It will then go to the City Planning Commission and the City Council.