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Soho Zoning Guidebook And Rollout

SoHo Broadway Initiative
New York City, NY
December 2017
July 2018
Service areas

Urban Planning + Real Estate Development Strategies


Public Policy Analysis


Market + Zoning Analysis


Data Visualization + Design


Project Management

SoHo is a thriving New York neighborhood filled with hallmark retail, tech offices, and loft apartments, all housed in beautiful cast iron architecture. The area is cherished by many who live, work, and visit because of this mixed-use nature and historic buildings. Despite this everyday reality, SoHo is still zoned as a light manufacturing district that permits activities like cotton ginning, metal finishing, and perfume production – industrial uses that no longer exist in Lower Manhattan. It restricts many retail, commercial, or residential uses unless complex rezoning and special permit processes are pursued. The SoHo Broadway Initiative hired Karp Strategies to develop a Zoning Guidebook aimed at lay readers to explain this mismatch and why it matters. Karp Strategies conducted a deep dive review into complex technical sources, including land use and demographic data, and the New York City Zoning Resolution. The firm collaborated with a Working Group, composed of members of SoHo Broadway’s board, to take this analysis to action, condensing detailed information into a streamlined narrative and user-friendly graphics that simplify concepts like special permits and landmarks. Karp Strategies also provide topflight project management to ensure that the Guidebook – and the variety of actors involved – stayed true to project goals. The final result is an accessible and educational resource for laypeople – including SoHo residents, owners, and businesses – so that anyone who wishes to can participate in conversations about the current status and future of this neighborhood. The Guidebook was published in July 2018.

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