50K Brooklynites at risk with East New York rezoning proposal: Report
De Blasio administration rebuffs a study that accuses its affordable housing plan of putting residents at risk of displacement.
The city's latest plan to revitalize East New York could push out almost 50,000 residents from their neighborhood, according to a new report.
Comptroller Scott Stringer's office analyzed the de Blasio administration's proposal to rezone the Brooklyn neighborhood as part of its citywide effort to build 200,000 units of affordable housing over the next 10 years.
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"For generations, East New York has been overlooked and under-resourced by the city in schools, parks, public transit, and affordable housing," Stringer said in a statement. “However, instead of strengthening the affordability of this community, the proposed rezoning would instead serve as an engine for displacement.
Stringer sent a letter to City Planning Commission Chair Carl Weisbrod in which he urged the administration modify its plans to better respond to local residents' concerns.
As it stands, there are an estimated 21,788 market-rate housing units thatalmost 50,000 residents in East New York call home.
Stringer argued that unless the rezoning plan addresses residents' worries more directly, tenants could have to earn as much as $83,484 a year in order to afford an apartment in a rezoned building.
A spokesman for Mayor Bill de Blasio pushed back on Stringer's summary, calling it "completely backwards."
According to the mayor's proposal, new units in a rezoned East New York would be "100 percent affordable" especially for three-person households earning less than $23,350 and as much as $69,930.
"These are families that are in danger today, because the market is already putting pressure on their rents," de Blasio spokesman Wiley Norvell said.
"It'll take enormous preservation and new affordable housing efforts to turn that tide, which is precisely what the city is working for," he added.