NEW YORK (PIX11) — Some new zoning proposals aim to promote local businesses and fill some empty commercial space.
The NYC Planning Commission has introduced a series of zoning changes to the administration of Mayor Eric Adams.
The ideas would allow a certain light and clean manufacturing inside space that has been zoned for retail.
Some retailers at traditional holiday markets could benefit. Dan Garodnick, the planning commissioner, spoke to PIX11 News at the Union Square Holiday Market.
They often feature small businesses and handmade products. From spicy to sweet, there is something for everyone.
“From the basement at my house to a small stall in the Canal Street market. That has been a lot of growth,” said chocolatier Daniel Corpuz.
Many of these small businesses on the market would like to expand production and be open year-round in a retail location.
Julie Stein is with Union Square Partnership.
“One of the magics of Union Square is the unique experience. You can be around your neighbor and local shopping opportunities,” Stein said.
The city wants to make that easier and it could help bring tenants to vacant retail space that currently does not allow items to be made on premises.
The city planning director and commissioner stated the rules would allow some products to be made and sold in the same place and create more opportunities.
“Today the zoning rules are very strict. We are trying to create city-wide changes here. You could do manufacturing that would include things that do not bother anybody, a pottery studio, or a jewelry maker,” Garodnick said.
Cantina Royal Hot Sauce started as a restaurant in Brooklyn and now is produced in a commercial kitchen in Long Island City. The product is available online and in stores. The owners would like to expand.
“Permitting is always a wild adventure. Some kind of path or a little more ease would be helpful,” said Cantina Royal CEO Diana Beshara.
The proposals are in the public review process with community boards. The NYC Council would also have to approve. The discussions will continue into 2024.