Community Board 13 no longer considers rezoning Brighton Beach a “priority.”
Each year, the board assembles a list of capital and expense priorities which is meant to encourage city agencies to complete certain projects, such as a rehabilitation of the Coney Island boardwalk. This year’s list boasts more than 50 projects but there’s no request for a rezoning plan for Brighton Beach.
The omission comes months after Community Board 13, at the request of City Councilmember Mike Nelson, voted against the Department of City Planning’s rezoning proposal for Brighton Beach. (Nelson had said he would introduce his own rezoning proposal.)
Following the CB13 defeat, City Planning officials said it’s unlikely that they’d ever again attempt to rezone the neighborhood.
“It’s just reality,” said Yelena Makhnin, a CB13 member and the executive director of the Brighton Beach Business Improvement District (BID). “It’s not a high priority [on the CB13 list] since, let’s be realistic, I’m pretty sure the city is not going to work on it soon.”
Brighton Beach resident Ida Sanoff, who supported the city’s rezoning proposal, fears the worst for Brighton.
“City Planning has said that as far as they’re concerned, the rezoning is dead. I don’t blame them because they worked on the plan for a long time,” Sanoff said.
Without downzoning, “The situation is going to go from bad to worse. You can’t keep putting up all these huge buildings without improving the infrastructure,” Sanoff added.
Community Board 13 member Brian Gotlieb said the group hopes to rezone Brighton one day.
“The removal shouldn’t be seen as the board abandoning the idea or the project,” Gotlieb said. “I don’t think anything should be read into it, particularly given the fact that projects can be put back on the list just as easily.”
“The rezoning of Brighton Beach is something that the board, I think, wants to do in accordance with the community’s wishes,” Gotlieb added.
©2009 Community News Group
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