The past few decades have brought tremendous amounts of change to the East Village (and many other parts of the city). And we all know that anytime something changes in Manhattan, for good or bad, you can expect to see an angry brigade of community members. So it comes as no surprise to read that a group in the East Village is working hard to get the neighborhood rezoned for the first time in 40 years. The Villager is reporting that the East Village Community Coalition (which came together to fight the dorm that was going to go up on E. Ninth over P.S. 64) has commissioned a comprehensive rezoning study from BFJ Planning, saving the city a fair amount of time and money.


And what, you ask, are these neighbors pushing for? Less bars? No not really, while the community members involved would be interested in having fewer drinking establishments in the East Village, that turns out to be a tough row to hoe as the neighborhood is designated Group 6 (which means drinking is allowed, and also grandfathers commercial spaces which don't currently serve booze into the group). Stopping current construction? Nope (that just doesn't seem to work as developers rarely flinch). No, what this group wants is pretty simple: They want the city to rezone the East Village so that no more buildings can go above 80 feet and to fix the dreaded community facility zoning. Why dreaded? Because over the past few years developers have learned how to use the perks offered with community facility zoning (basically you get to build bigger if you say you'll be offering community services, including dormitories) to produce such out of place eyesores as the NYU dorm on Second and the Bowery, the New York Law School dorm on Third between Second and First and the formally-going-to-be-a-dorm-now-just-going-to-be-a-boutique-hotel on Third and the Bowery.

Of course, any rezoning will take some time, but EVCC is pushing for an expedited process that would go before City Planning in a year or two. Gothamist says the sooner the community facility zoning allowance is fixed the better. What's your take? Is the East Village getting too tall?

Photograph of P.S. 64, which EVCC is working to preserve and turn into a community center