City Councilman Joel Rivera has floated a novel idea: Limit fast food establishments through zoning. Rivera pointed to the fact that many fast food locations are low-income neighborhood, which also have very high obesity rates. (One in five schoolchildren is overweight and "almost" one in four is obese, according to the Department of Health.) Rivera sid, "You're not going to totally eliminate fast food restaurants, but you could limit the amount," and says he will hold hearings to see if the zoning laws can be changed in such a way. NYU's Mitchell Moss doubts zoning laws could be changed, saying, "In a city like New York, where everybody is on the run, it's very hard to single out what is and isn't fast food."
Do you think this idea has legs? The idea is certainly intriguing, but we wonder if some neighborhoods would be upset that a cheap and convenient food option would be denied. And the Post reports that the big pizza chains - Papa John's and Domino's - are looking to increase their presence in the city (there's a quote from Slice!).
Photograph of Blimpie in Greenpoint from Tien Mao