Rezoning Is Urged for Chinatown
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With the proposed rezoning of the Lower East Side under way, a coalition of Asian-Americans is urging the city to consider rezoning neighboring Chinatown, as well as protecting that district from any spillover development that may occur.
The executive director of Asian Americans for Equality, Christopher Kui, told the City Planning Commission at a hearing yesterday that he did not oppose its plans for the Lower East Side, and that he hoped they would consider rezoning Chinatown in the near future.
But a second resident group, the Coalition to Protect Chinatown and the Lower East Side, said that is not enough. It is calling on the Planning Commission to halt the rezoning of the Lower East Side, an act it calls racist. “It protects by height limits in some parts of the East Village that are predominantly white, and will encourage development in areas where people of color live,” the coordinator of the Coalition to Protect Chinatown and the Lower East Side, Josephine Lee, said.
Ms. Lee said her organization brought 500 protesters to the hearing yesterday and sent in more than 11,000 petitions opposing the rezoning.
The proposed area for rezoning is bounded by East 13th Street to the north, Avenue D to the east, Grand and Delancey streets to the south, and Third Avenue and the Bowery to the west.