New York Suspends Land Use Reviews for Shelters

The Adams administration in New York City will relax the review process for homeless shelters to create new space for arriving asylum seekers.

2 minute read

May 17, 2023, 5:00 AM PDT

By James Brasuell @CasualBrasuell

Ellis Island is shown across the water of the New York Harbor.

Gary / Adobe Stock

New York Mayor Eric Adams signed Executive Order 406 on May 15, temporarily suspending rules in the city’s Uniform Land Use Review Procedure, New York City’s version of the development approval process, to reduce the review process for siting, leasing, constructing, and operating new homeless shelters.

According to the executive order, the mayor’s decision to relax the city’s approval process for homeless shelters comes in response to the arrival of asylum seekers in the city. “[T]he City now faces an unprecedented humanitarian crisis that requires it to take extraordinary measures to meet the immediate needs of the asylum seekers while continuing to serve the tens of thousands of people who are currently using the DHS Shelter System,” according to the executive order.

Elizabeth Kim reports the news of the executive order in an article for Gothamist. The city’s shelter system is “at or near capacity,” according to city officials and aid workers cited in the article.  

“The city previously suspended its lengthy land use review process for the building of emergency relief centers, which are designed to serve as temporary housing for migrants,” reports Kim. “But as part of the new order, the city will now include homeless shelters in that exemption.”

“The suspension of rules — known as the Uniform Land Use Procedure or ULURP — means that the city will not be required to hold hearings or submit to any of the typical approvals or recommendations involved in land use approvals,” adds Kim.

Kim also reports that the Adams administration is considering 20 school gyms as possible shelter sites.

Tuesday, May 16, 2023 in Gothamist

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