CB 11 OKs new zoning measure

An attorney for a Getty service station on Francis Lewis Boulevard in Bayside asked Community Board 11 at its recent meeting for an extension on a variance at the site which expired seven years ago. Photo by Nathan Duke
By Nathan Duke

Community Board 11 approved a plan this week that would rezone 50 blocks in Bayside as well as a new zoning district designation that would restrict height and front yard requirements on homes in the district.

CB 11, which weighed the two measures at its monthly meeting Monday, voted 35−1 in favor of a plan to rezone portions of North Bayside and East Flushing in a project split between the board and Flushing’s CB 7.

The board also voted unanimously to approve an amendment to establish a new R1−2A zoning district, which would allow for a maximum 35−foot roof height.

CB 11 member Henry Euler said the rezoning plan could be completed and approved by the city within a few months due to the fact that it is split up between the northeast Queens and Flushing boards.

“This was an incredible undertaking,” said former board CB 11 Chairman Jerry Iannece. “It was an exhaustive process between two community boards.”

CB 11 covers Bayside, Little Neck, Douglaston, part of Auburndale and part of Fresh Meadows, while CB 7 covers Flushing, Whitestone, College Point, Bay Terrace and the other part of Auburndale.

The rezoning plan would include 257 blocks, of which 50 are located within CB 11’s district. The boundaries for the project are 25th Avenue in the north, Clearview Expressway and Francis Lewis Boulevard in the east, Long Island Rail Road tracks and Northern Boulevard in the south and Union Street in the west.

The project would allow for single−family homes and prevent large apartment buildings that have been constructed in the district in recent years.

“The rezoning proposal will help to restore the quality of life on many blocks in this community,” City Councilman Tony Avella (D−Bayside) said. “The construction of multiple homes in place of a single−family house and the construction of McMansions in this quiet community will not be allowed to continue unchecked.”

The board also voted 34−2 in favor of permitting an existing Getty Service Station at 34−67 Francis Lewis Blvd., near the border of Flushing and Bayside, to continue operating. An attorney for the service station’s owner asked the board to extend the term of a variance for the site, which expired in 2002.

The board voted to extend the variance, but included stipulations that the station must move a large dumpster from its site to Francis Lewis Boulevard, as well as prevent vehicles from parking at the site. Board members said they have frequently seen trucks parked on the property.

The board voted to allow the extension of the variance. It will now expire in 2012.

But not all board members were pleased with the result of the vote.

“This business should not be there,” board member Frank Skala said. “It’s not safe. I’ve pulled a kid out from under a car at that site.”

Skala said he has witnessed students from IS 25, located across the street, get hit by cars while crossing Francis Lewis Boulevard.

Reach reporter Nathan Duke by e−mail at nduke@timesledger.com or by phone at 718−229−0300, Ext. 156.

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