Councilmembers Support the Gowanus Summit


Yesterday at 5:30 p.m., Councilmembers de Blasio & Yassky averred the principles of the Gowanus Summit, officially. What is the Gowanus Summit and what are those principles? Well, the summit is "a coalition of labor, civic, housing, industrial retention, environmental and community groups promoting a diverse accountable development platform in the context of proposed rezoning of Gowanus," not to be confused with FROGG. Their vision of a sustainable Gowanus: affordable housing, industrial space and jobs, architectural contextuality, mixed uses and environmental quality. After the signing, City Planning Commish Amanda Burden spoke — briefly — to a packed auditorium at PS32, promising to wrap up the rezoning of Gowanus by June of next year and move on the Carroll Gardens downzoning (more on that at Gowanus Lounge). According to their slideshow presentation (above), DCP's vision for the area aligns with the Gowanus Summit's, and the Toll Brothers' spot rezoning of one parcel in the area pretty much fits with it, too, much to the chagrin of many neighbors. Last night's issue was a recurring one: the canal needs to be cleaned. Those supporting the rezoning say getting folks living near it, especially in million dollar apartments, will create a constituency with a stake in having it cleaned. Those wary of the rezoning say babies shouldn't be raised along a toxic waterway. Then there's the issue of sewage and stormwater. Those concerned about the latter issues pleaded with the DCP to make sure the infrastructure could support their changes, adding thousands of new residents in buildings up to 12 stories high and a whole lot of toilets, sinks and washing machines.

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