More than a year ago, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced a 10-point plan to spur the city's manufacturing sector. Point No. 2 was to limit the number of hotels and self-storage facilities in designated industrial business zones (IBZs).
The plan has made few headlines since, largely because the administration is still working on a bill that insiders expected months ago. But self-storage operators have been gearing up for a fight, and for good reason: City Hall is backed by manufacturers and advocates who frown on self-storage because, they say, it occupies large buildings on key sites, creates few jobs and pays low wages. Moreover, the industry is growing.
Owners of storage businesses argue that they have become scapegoats for a manufacturing exodus that will continue regardless.
The mayor's legislation is likely to require self-storage facilities to obtain special permits to open in IBZs, a costly and time-consuming obstacle intended to preserve sites for manufacturers.