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A Relatively Unknown Corner of Manhattan Faces Planning Controversy

Manhattan Valley has seen little development, but an influx of young families, new restaurants, and a community-driven planning effort are stirring the pot.
December 6, 2019, 7am PST | James Brasuell | @CasualBrasuell
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Tom Acitelli reports on changes in Manhattan Valley, "which stretches between West 96th Street and West 110th Street from Central Park to Broadway" in New York City. The neighborhood has been easy to overlook, according to Acitelli, "despite its 10 blocks of frontage on Central Park and location between Columbia University–dominated Morningside Heights to the north and the much more storied Upper West Side to the south and west," but that is changing quickly despite a lack of development investment.

"Manhattan Valley’s appeal has been rising as new restaurants spring up and young families move in. But the only significant recent development in the neighborhood has been the conversion of two city-owned garages into affordable housing complexes," writes Acitelli.

In addition to describing the market context for the neighborhood, Acitelli also notes an ongoing discussion about planning for the neighborhood's future: "The neighborhood is in the midst of a rezoning controversy, with City Council Speaker Corey Johnson announcing in September that his chamber would help advance a rezoning designed to preserve and create affordable housing."

"The city Planning Department is against the rezoning, contending it would create an insignificant amount of affordable housing. It’s unclear if the plan will advance," according to Acitelli.

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Published on Monday, December 2, 2019 in Crain's New York Business
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