After three Upper West Side private schools applied for backyard expansions, Council Member Gale Brewer is seeking a zoning change to save space known as the “doughnut.”
The doughnut is the collective backyards of a block, which forms a rectangle of green space. But in the search for more space, Chabad, the Dwight School and York Prep tried to expand into their own backyards, much to the chagrin of nearby residents and the community board.
Doughnuts “represent a wisely planned and designed natural amenity,” Brewer wrote in a letter to Amanda Burden, chair of the City Planning Commission. “We need to preserve the open spaces behind our row house neighborhoods.”
Noting that it is unlikely the “doughnuts” can be protected through legislation, Brewer asked to meet with City Planning Commission staff to discuss ways to prevent development of the space.
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