I wish to wholeheartedly thank Councilmember Cindy Bass for introducing legislation to temporarily halt demolition in the 8th district. I hope that during the six months’ moratorium City …
I wish to wholeheartedly thank Councilmember Cindy Bass for introducing legislation to temporarily halt demolition in the 8th district. I hope that during the six months’ moratorium City Council will study the zoning laws and put an end to the law which allows an additional story to be built if a developer includes the sale of food in the project. This law was originally intended to increase food availability in underserved neighborhoods, but has been extended to include the entire City.
In my opinion this was a disastrous move. We now have enormous 5 or 6 story blocks of buildings all up and down Germantown Avenue that overshadow surrounding buildings and severely detract from the appearance of the street. Germantown Avenue is a listed Historic District and the City carefully restored the cobblestones on the street itself. What is the point of doing that if the historic buildings beside the street are allowed to come down?
As Ken Weinstein said in your article, the City should come up with an “alternative development strategy that incentivizes reuse of buildings instead of demolishing buildings.” The new buildings show no respect for the local architecture at all.
I think the “By Right” zoning law is doing tremendous harm all over the City. Developers build on every inch of their property to maximize their profit with no regard to appearance. Worse, they endanger pedestrians by disregarding sidewalk setbacks. Residents should be able to have input into developments. Our historic architecture is one reason why people want to move here, but if the overall appearance becomes unattractive, they will go elsewhere.