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More than 300 blocks in Hollis and St. Albans are on their way to being rezoned, and City Councilmember Leroy Comrie believes the rezoning is long overdue.
“The community has been desperate for it for a long time,” Comrie said. “It’s beyond time to make this correction to the St Albans and Hollis area to prevent what’s going on with tearing down one family homes and putting up three and four [family homes].”
The Department of City Planning recently certified plans to rezone 317 blocks in the two neighborhoods to protect against the overdevelopment, while allowing room for modest residential growth in the outside corridors of the project.
“With our new contextual zoning tools, we will be able to guide future development so that it complements the built fabric of St. Albans and Hollis,” said Amanda Burden, City Planning Director.
After City Planning certified the zoning application, they sent the plans to Community Board 12, which has 60 days to review the plan and pass along their recommendation.
“The Community Board has been involved in this process from the beginning and have been involved in every facet of the project,” said Comrie, who will encourage the community to support the zoning changes.
The area proposed for rezoning stretches from Merrick Boulevard to the west and south, Springfield Boulevard and Francis Lewis Boulevard to the east, and 99th Avenue, Farmers Boulevard and Brinkerhoff Avenue to the north.
The rezoning area is southeast of downtown Jamaica and is adjacent to Cambria Heights, Queens Village and Laurelton to the west.
One of the biggest proposed zoning changes involves replacing R3-2 and R4 zones with lower-density and contextual zoning districts prohibiting some of the overdevelopment currently occurring in the community.
Meanwhile, the southeast community continues to debate the Jamaica rezoning project, but Comrie said they need more information before going ahead with the plan.
“It’s such an ambitious and probably the largest zoning change ever done in the city, so we want to ensure that we have the necessary services implemented,” he said.
In addition, Comrie said he hopes to convene a town hall meeting in Queens with representatives from all the city agencies to get assurances about infrastructure, congestion, parking and transportation issues.

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