Brooklyn – Councilman David G. Greenfield spoke out against a request for a reduction in required parking spaces at a new office and retail building soon coming to Coney Island Avenue and Avenue L. The proposed mega development at 1504 Coney Island Avenue will bring over 160,000 square feet of new development to the intersection. The plans include a 49,332 square foot department store, 23,737 square feet of additional retail space, 3,413 of office space, 56,569 square feet of health care facilities 28,314. Zoning regulations for this site would require a minimum of 346 parking spaces due to the large size of the project. However, the developer has asked the Board of Standards and Appeals to provide only 272 parking spaces. That would mean 74 less parking spaces for the neighborhood.
This project is across the street from the popular Pomegranate Supermarket. Local residents know this intersection is already the most traffic-congested intersection in all of Midwood. Every parking space available is essential, and in an effort to prevent an exacerbation of current problems Councilman Greenfield is pushing back against the applicant’s request to provide less parking for the new facility which is sure to bring more traffic to Coney Island Ave.
“I frequently drive by Avenue L & Coney Island Avenue and am stuck among double and triple-parked cars. It’s really ridiculous that anyone would suggest that the lack of parking is not a problem in this neighborhood. That is why I am fighting to make sure the community gets the required amount of parking for this new mega development,” said Councilman David G. Greenfield.
On Tuesday a representative from Councilman Greenfield’s office testified in opposition to the requested parking reduction at the BSA and cited the frequent nuisances local residents already face, such as driveways blocked by parked cars, as examples of why any development in the area must provide sufficient parking for its patrons.
Community Board 12 District Manager Barry Spitzer also testified before the BSA in opposition to the project. The zoning committee of Community Board 12 and the full community board also voted down this plan.
“I have no doubt that a failure to provide the necessary parking spaces along this stretch of Coney Island Avenue will generate hardship for the residents of Midwood,” said Barry Spitzer, District Manager of Community Board 12.
The current proposed development at 1504 Coney Island Avenue can be built as of right, which means there is no community approval process for what sort of building or offices may go up on the site. The community does have a role in approving special requests made of the city by the developer for relief of zoning requirements, such as a reduction in parking requirements. The Board of Standards and Appeals, which consists of a Chair and several Commissioners, is charged with reviewing these requests and the public has the opportunity to give testimony before the board. Councilman Greenfield will continue to advocate that the Board of Standards and Appeals to reject the developer’s request to reduce parking in this neighborhood.