Preservation Issues

Conservancy Promotes Preservation Before Mayor’s Charter Commission

July, 2018

The Conservancy is standing up for your voice in the debate over planning and zoning. We testified at a hearing of the Mayor’s Charter Revision Commission on July 23, and told the panel that the Landmarks Commission needs to remain independent, that Community Boards need more resources to analyze complicated development proposals, and that New Yorkers want to have a say in how their neighborhoods evolve.

Read our testimony here.

Some two dozen speakers attended the hearing, commenting on issues from election reform, to Community Board appointments, to land use. The Commissioners are holding these hearings as part of a process that could lead to ballot measures in 2019.

Their preliminary report called out a suggestion from the Real Estate Board of New York that the Landmarks Commission be folded into the Department of City Planning. We reminded the panel of the important role that designated landmarks and historic districts have played in revitalizing New York after financial crises and the many positive economic impacts they continue to create. (Historic Preservation Economic Impact Study)

The City Council has convened a separate Charter Revision Commission. It will release a schedule later this year. This group is likely to have a stronger focus on land use, getting into details of how ULURP (the Uniform Land Use Review Procedure) works and how communities can participate in planning. The Conservancy will be testifying in front of that Commission and will update you all along the way.