Sheepshead Bay still fighting zone-busting Avenue Z development

Going up: Developers filed plans for a two-story community facility building on Avenue Z back in 2014, but the community is fighting it, and it’s now up to the city.
Brooklyn Daily
Share on TwitterTweet
Share on Facebook

Don’t miss our updates:

A proposed development planned for Avenue Z just can’t seem to get out of park — because of parking.

Repeated rejections of a zone-busting commercial development planned for a narrow block now occupied by former gas station LS Auto Clinic and its parking lot have led to a succession of changes to the proposal since it was first floated in 2014, and the latest version suffered another setback this week — in part because the developer insists on not eliminating all parking on the site, which locals say would wreak havoc on a neighborhood that’s already desperate for spots, said neighbor Katharine D’Ambrosi.

“We who live here know how difficult it has become for residents to find a parking spot in front of their own houses,” said D’Ambrosi, who lives across from the proposed structure on E. 22nd Street.

Developer Aleksandr Finkelshteyn — who doesn’t yet own the property between Jerome Avenue and E. 21st Street, according to city records — plans to build the two-story building incorporating commercial space and a community center, but no parking —in violation of local zoning laws — according to his application filed with the Board of Standards and Appeals, which must sign off on a variance before the project can more forward.

Finkelshteyn’s attorney Eric Palatnik, presented the latest plans to the city agency on Aug. 15, but the board again sent him back to the drawing board asking for additional materials. Palatnik has until Oct. 25 to submit the requested documents, and the next hearing is scheduled for Nov. 14, according to a spokesman for the city agency.

Palatnik did not respond to calls for comment on what additional materials were required.

The plan has changed over the years since it was first pitched in 2014. It was dropped in height from four stories to just two, and a community space was added on the second floor. The latest plans don’t specify a medical facility, but Community Board 15 chairwoman Theresa Scavo and other neighbors say that’s the developer’s goal.

The one thing that hasn’t changed is Finkelshteyn refusal to provide any of the 69 parking spots that zoning laws require for a development of this size.

Community Board 15 unanimously rejected the application in 2015, according to Scavo, but the board’s vote is only advisory. It’s really up to the Board of Standard and Appeals to approve the project or reject it.

The Aug. 15 rebuff by the board makes Scavo optimistic that it will ultimately listen to the community in its final ruling later this year.

“I think that the Board of Standards and Appeals is doing their job trying to protect the neighborho­od,” said Scavo.

Reach reporter Julianne Cuba at (718) 260–4577 or by e-mail at Follow her on Twitter @julcuba.
Updated 1:34 am, July 10, 2018
Today’s news:
Share on TwitterTweet
Share on Facebook

Don’t miss our updates:

Reader feedback

Clate from Sheepshead says:
The way thing in this area are going....I expect construction to begin soon.
Aug. 17, 2017, 1:34 pm
Ron from Ave Z says:
Can someone tell me why Chaim Deutsch refused to speak out against this like every other elected official who represents the area?
Aug. 18, 2017, 8:16 am
monica from sheepshead says:
miserable old locals refusing to adapt with modern times rather look at an abandoned gas station than see a new building that is renting to new business and employing dozens of locals.
Aug. 18, 2017, 11:46 am
BIG Steve from Sunny Sheepshead Bay! says:
Ridiculous comment calling people who live in the community choking from over development and not enough parking as "miserable old locals." Really? The single biggest complaint every day is traffic and the parking emergency in Sheepshead Bay with over 100 new developments just since hurricane Sandy!
No one opposes modern, new, progress or development, but all these people in the neighborhood are asking is to follow the laws. If the law requires a certain number of parking spaces, then build them with the development as the regulations require. If you cannot afford to do that, then don't build that plan, devise a more conforming use in accordance with the community needs. That is how community planning and cooperative development moves a community forward.
As far as the elected officials, it would be nice to see them follow the community's wishes and testify at the Board of Standards and Appeals and stop harmful projects that hurt the residents. Good Luck.
Aug. 18, 2017, 5:10 pm
MUSCLE13 from Sheepshead Bay says:
Sheepshead Bay is exploding with development and I love it!. Been living here my entire life. We are catching up with Downtown Brooklyn and why not? We have the bay, the boats, the beach, the restaurants, the train all with in walking distance. Keep development coming!
Aug. 19, 2017, 10:57 pm
MUSCLE13 from Sheepshead Bay says:
Forgot the movie theater....and Coney Island within a 10 minute drive with Amphitheater, MCU Park , Luna Park and the Aquarium. What's not to love? Keep building! Watchout Downtown Brooklyn here comes Southern Brooklyn rising!!!!
Aug. 19, 2017, 11:01 pm

Comments closed.

Schneps Community News Group

Keep it local!

Stay in touch with your community. Subscribe to our free newsletter: