Spiting Mandatory Inclusionary Housing to Save Mandatory Inclusionary Housing

The question of whether New York City's new mandatory inclusionary housing policy should apply to a 17-story project in Manhattan could have wide-ranging implications.

1 minute read

August 10, 2016, 8:00 AM PDT

By James Brasuell @CasualBrasuell


Rental Apartments

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"A small parking lot between 17th and 18th Streets, just off Avenue of the Americas in Manhattan, has become an unlikely focal point in a battle over the future of Mayor Bill de Blasio’s affordable housing plan," according to Matt A.V. Chaban.

The development in question would add a 17-story, 62-unit condominium project on the lot. "To do so, the developer, Acuity Capital Partners, must receive a special permit from the City Planning Commission, because current zoning allows only up to six-story buildings," according to Chaban. "Several politicians and civic groups argue that because the project will be bigger, it should be subject to the New York City’s new mandatory inclusionary housing rules."

Which brings the case study to a surprise turn. Joining the developer in arguing against the application of mandatory inclusionary housing is the chairman of the Planning Commission, Carl Weisbrod. The de Blasio Administration is taking that position to insulate the policy from lawsuits. Legal disputes have overturned some or all of inclusionary zoning policies in cities like Los Angeles and San Jose. Chaban's coverage provides a lot more detail of the case study, as well as of the case being built on each side of the issue.

Tuesday, August 9, 2016 in The New York Times

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