Mayor Adam’s ‘City of Yes’ Plans for Increased Development Revealed

Last week the Department of City Planning presented a more detailed preliminary outline of Mayor Adams’ “City of Yes” plan — aimed at increasing development, and addressing issues like environmental sustainability, affordability, and assisting small businesses. The plans are still being developed and may continue to evolve before they reach a final set of proposals which would have to go through a detailed public hearing, review, and approval proposals. But there were some important takeaways:

  • The plan does not include any neighborhood upzonings or significant changes in allowances for the size and scale of new development. The one exception is the granting of an allowance for the same small increase in the allowable size of 100% affordable housing in certain zoning districts as currently afforded to senior housing. 
  • The plan would make it easier to include smaller-sized units in certain developments.
  • The plan would make it easier to convert hotels to affordable supportive housing (housing for people in need, with services).
  • The plan would eliminate some parking requirements for some new developments. 
  • The plan would allow for a broader range of ground-floor uses in some commercial corridors in residential and mixed use districts. 
  • The plan would make it easier to add solar panels to roofs and to retrofit the exteriors of existing buildings with more energy efficient skins.  

Watch the video of the presentation here and read more about the proposals here.

It should be noted that these proposals are still being developed and may continue to evolve. Also, nothing precludes the Adams administration from seeking other changes to zoning on either a citywide or neighborhood-by-neighborhood basis through other processes or proposals. So no matter what these proposals ultimately include, we must remain vigilant, as Mayor Adams has spoken extensively of what he sees as the need to upzone neighborhoods.

Village Preservation will continue to monitor these proposals and offer analysis as well as information on hearings and public participation. These proposals are not yet finalized; when they are, they would have to go through an extensive public hearing, review, and approval process. In the meantime, to offer commentary to the city on the proposals or ask questions, email

October 24, 2022