A Unique Model for Community/City Investment and Implementation: the Gowanus (Brooklyn) Experience

October 31, 2023 2:30 PM – 3:30 PM (GMT-08:00) Pacific Time Los Angeles Convention Center - West Hall, 515B Concurrent Session
Open to All Attendees
Community and Neighborhood Development Public and Private Partnerships Regulations and Zoning
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In November 2021, the New York City Council approved the Gowanus Neighborhood Rezoning Plan, promising to add 8,500 new apartments in the neighborhood by 2035. As part of the rezoning agreement, the city also made a historic commitment to 56 Points of Agreement (POAs), community-designed investments in housing, infrastructure, public spaces, and small businesses totaling nearly $450 million, including $200 million for the needs of local public housing residents. Taken together, they could have a profound positive effect on the quality of life for Gowanus residents, workers, and visitors for decades to come. New York City, however, has a history of unmet promises after neighborhood-wide rezonings. The Gowanus community sought a new model of oversight, one that offered more proactive dialogue and partnership with city agencies to ensure implementation. Under POA #1, the city committed to support and work with a Gowanus Oversight Task Force (GOTF) comprising residents, workers, and local nonprofit groups—a unique and replicable model that has become a forum for problem solving and discourse about the community’s journey toward more justice, equity, and resilience.