Sánchez tells Council zoning amendments would hurt her district

Councilwoman María Quiñones-Sánchez sent a memo to her fellow members of City Council Thursday morning asking that they not be “overly eager” to support a bill introduced by Councilman Brian O’Neill that would change a handful or regulations in the CMX-2 and CMX-2.5 commercial corridor zoning districts.

She said she was glad that O’Neill had agreed to leave community gardens out of his bill, but that its other provisions would be equally harmful to commercial corridor revitalization in her district.

“Most significantly,” Sánchez wrote, “I am concerned that this bill will impose severe limitations on the number of residential units allowed in commercial properties, restricting many large 3 story structures to a single rental unit. Many of our older corridors are in need or revitalization and need these rental units to make investment possible. This will discourage investment in these corridors and create significant burdens on the Mom and Pop business owners working to keep our neighborhood corridors viable.”

Sánchez continued, “My business associations and corridor managing non-profits have been unanimous in telling me that this bill would hurt the small business owners of the 7th district. I believe that we should respect the effort that went into crafting our new code and not be overly eager to make changes just months after implementation.”

The Councilwoman also said that if O’Neill’s bill advances, she will consider introducing legislation of her own applying the unamended regulations of the new zoning code enacted in August to her district.

Contact the reporter at jbrey@planphilly.com and follow him on Twitter @jaredbrey

Want a digest of WHYY’s programs, events & stories? Sign up for our weekly newsletter.

It will take 126,000 members this year for great news and programs to thrive. Help us get to 100% of the goal.