Saturday, January 31, 2015

Pols pushing to legalize zoning for basement apartments

From the Times Ledger:

The idea to legalize basement apartments in the borough and the rest of the city is not sitting well with several civic and community associations in the borough.

Those who oppose the idea pointed out that fires in these units had proven to be deadly, and that increasing the capacity in single- and two-family districts overburden the schools, the sewage system and garbage collections.

The Bayside Hills Civic Association is one of the associations fighting to prevent widespread basement living from becoming a reality. The group disagrees with new zoning regulations being proposed to legalize these apartments.

“A basement is no place for someone to live,” said Michael Feiner, president of the civic group. “Zoning regulations are in place for a reason.” Yolanda Gallagher, of the Fresh Meadows Homeoweners Civic Association, said her organization also opposes these conversions.

“It’s just very unhealthy to live in a basement,” Gallagher said. “This is just a bad idea, a very bad idea.”

She noted that basement apartments do not have good ventilation, and most of them have very small windows. “It’s just dangerous to live in them,” she said.

The Queens Civic Congress, an umbrella organization representing more than 100 civic and condo groups in the borough, is against the legalization of basements “due to life safety, fire, congestion, school overcrowding, crime and overuse of city infrastructure, such as water treatment, sewage and transportation facilities.”

The organizations added, “We believe that most small homes with basements were not built for occupancy below grade.”

In a letter sent by Richard Hellenbrecht, the former president of the Queens Civic Congress, to de Blasio, he noted “legalization of illegal residences would encourage creation of new basements, cellar apartments leading to significant overdevelopment.”

But Councilwoman Julissa Ferreras (D-East Elmhurst), agrees with Katz’s and de Blasio’s plan to legalize basements and cellars.


Anonymous said...

Basement apartments can already be legally rented in single family houses, just cellar apartments can't.

Anonymous said...

This will kill the city. You will need to increase every ciyty service,especially sanitation police and fire/ems. Who is gonna pay for this???? Start wemailing pols and let them know the consequences of this........for them!

Anonymous said...

People who rent out basement apartments illegally do so to not pay taxes on the rental income. I doubt there will be a rush to legally convert the basements.

Anonymous said...

Who will watch over this process? Do they realize how thus would destroy every neighborhood as we know them today? And all for a cheap vote. Damn those Democrats!

We're Queens - We Can't Have Nice Things said...


This is a terrible idea! We need to reduce the population of NYC - mass transit and schools are waaaay overcrowded and, consequently, seriously under-performing

We need more regulations in this out-of-control city to rein in illegal apartments, illegal curb cuts, paved over yards, etc.

Pols should be forced to live in the neighborhoods they represent - that might change their minds on these misguided, incredibly stupid, self-serving agendas!

Anonymous said...

If they're so gung-ho about it, why don't all those persons who have publicly supported the legalization of basement apartments offer to live in one for a year? And when I say a basement apartment I mean a typical one-not some high faulting' place (I think we all know the kind of rat hole I'm talking about).

And hey, while they're in that dank tomb and making do with hot plates and extension cords hanging all over the place they could even get all social media and blog about it in real time.

So what say you pols?

Anonymous said...

More People More Subsidies for the politicians to spend on their addicted to entitlements class.
POWER,its hard to give up.

JQ said...

With this proposal,the huers of elected office has gave up their plans and betrayed the 23 percent of the voting public to get decent affordable housing with adequate space.

All the property pimps are now laughing their skulls off now they can continue building their monolith playgrounds for the free-spending disposable income transients and investor classes to takeover the hot borough(by default since brooklyn has been devoured by the developer caliphate)of Queens.For all the individuals that were given power to make change have sold what was left of their spines that a shot of androtestoterone won't repair.

there are no choices unless you got money to piss away in this town.And no matter what you can afford you will somehow get burned.Potentially in a basement with one too many cords on a power strip you bought at jack's or in one of these carbon saving wood-based towers that are plaguing the territories.

it won't be long when the n.y. times will start praising the hotness of tent cities.

and so it goes.


Anonymous said...

Has Queens Civic Congress got any teeth left anymore? It looks like a moribound organization...all mouth with no real power. LOL! I am sure that every pol is quaking in his boots when they draft a position paper. It is only the voters that have the real power to decide who represents their best interests. So far the equation is..dumb voters=dumb or crooked politicians. And, man, Queens looks like the dumbest of all the 5 boroughs. Keep on pulling out your crabgrass and pulling for the wrong representatives. Y'all getts whose ya deserves!

Anonymous said...

What are they nuts these illegals have like 6 kids each who will be repeating the process again by age 30!
No way can the city afford this, do the math

Anonymous said...

Such basement apartments will attract more illegal scum to suck off NYC's teat. Why should we create conditions to attract MORE illiterate resource-sucking parasites? And more criminal elements? And there's already a parking crisis. Do we need to double the population density of residential areas?