South Island Rezoning

Gov­er­nors Island offers devel­op­ment oppor­tu­ni­ties and leas­ing oppor­tu­ni­ties with­in its 1.3 mil­lion square feet of his­toric build­ings (“North Island”) and its 33 acres of devel­op­ment sites on the Island’s south­ern end. Envi­sioned to sup­port the Island’s ongo­ing growth as a year-round resource for New York City and devel­op a sus­tain­able rev­enue stream to con­tribute to its expand­ed oper­a­tions, the devel­op­ment sites on the South Island were des­ig­nat­ed for future con­struc­tion as part of the Island’s Park and Pub­lic Space Mas­ter Plan released in 2010. The Mas­ter Plan laid the ground­work for the Island’s now near­ly com­plet­ed, award-win­ning park as well as the two areas on the South Island des­ig­nat­ed for devel­op­ment, includ­ing the 6.5‑acre West­ern Devel­op­ment Zone and 26.5‑acre East­ern Devel­op­ment Zone. The North Island was rezoned in 2013 to allow for a broad mix of uses, includ­ing edu­ca­tion­al, com­mer­cial, cul­tur­al and non-prof­it facilities.

Build­ing upon a decade of invest­ment and near­ly 20 years of plan­ning and advo­ca­cy around edu­ca­tion­al, non-prof­it and com­mer­cial use of the Island, in 2018, The Trust announced plans to move for­ward with a pro­posed rezon­ing of the South Island to help real­ize Gov­er­nors Island’s poten­tial as a year-round part of the city’s fabric.

The new dis­trict on the South Island would allow for a mix of aca­d­e­m­ic, com­mer­cial, non-prof­it, cul­tur­al, con­ven­ing and hos­pi­tal­i­ty uses, and is required to sup­port the devel­op­ment as a cen­ter for cli­mate solu­tions. The pro­posed rezon­ing will extend uses allowed in the North Island to the two South Island devel­op­ment sites to sup­port a year-round, 247 mixed-use dis­trict, anchored by an edu­ca­tion­al or research cen­ter, while ful­ly pro­tect­ing the exist­ing park and cre­at­ing new open space as part of the new devel­op­ment. This will gen­er­ate a sus­tain­able rev­enue stream to sup­port Island oper­a­tions and expand­ed pub­lic access. The exist­ing park would remain open dur­ing any construction.

Zon­ing Today

New Pro­posed South Island Spe­cial District

Zon­ing Frame­work Summary

The rezon­ing would expand the Island’s open space, increase pub­lic con­nec­tions between the park and water­front esplanade, and add an addi­tion­al lay­er of pro­tec­tion for all open space on the South Island. Con­trols for con­nec­tiv­i­ty, urban design, his­toric sen­si­tiv­i­ty, height and bulk are writ­ten into the zon­ing, as well as pro­tec­tions to pre­serve view cor­ri­dors from the park. All build­ings across the devel­op­ment sites will strict­ly adhere to flood-resis­tant con­struc­tion methods. 

No zon­ing changes are being pro­posed for the North Island/​Governors Island His­toric Dis­trict as part of this plan. 


Fact Sheet: City Coun­cil Land Use Com­mit­tee Approves Mod­i­fied Zon­ing Application

On Thurs­day, May 27, the New York City Coun­cil vot­ed to approve the Gov­er­nors Island South Island Rezon­ing pro­pos­al with modifications.

Upcom­ing Meetings

The pub­lic review process for this pro­pos­al has con­clud­ed. Please click here to see past pub­lic presentations.

For more information on the vision for future growth on Governors Island, please click here.

For all public presentations related to Governors Island, please click here.