The city is meeting with various community groups in a preclude to possibly rezoning Empire Boulevard on the southern end of Crown Heights, Our Time Press reports.
Empire Boulevard is currently zoned for commercial use only, although there are a few residential buildings on the thoroughfare that were in place before it was zoned commercial, so they are ‘grandfathered’ in.
The city’s involvement comes after Community Board 9 requested a zoning study of the entire district, but singled out Empire Boulevard as part of their request.
The bureaucratic movement spurred a grass-roots start-up organization, dubbed The Movement to Protect the People (MTOPP), whose major concern is the city plans to turn Empire Boulevard into a canyon of luxury high-rise buildings. The organization fears that even with the inclusion of some affordable apartments, a rezoning of the thoroughfare could further destabilize the already working-class neighborhood.