An appeals court has reinstated the city’s plan to rezone Inwood.
In a unanimous 5-0 ruling issued on Thursday, a panel of New York State Appellate Court judges reversed an earlier decision by a lower court to nullify the rezoning.
“The City Council acted properly, and consistently with…procedures in approving the rezoning and issuing its own written statement finding that the rezoning avoided or minimized adverse environmental impacts to the maximum extent practicable,” the judges wrote in their decision.
In December 2019, a New York State Supreme Court annulled the Inwood rezoning, as Justice Verna Saunders ruled that the city had failed to properly study the rezoning’s impact on minority-owned businesses and residents of color, as well as other consequences.
Saunders ruled in a lawsuit filed by a coalition of Inwood community groups, residents and small business owners, led by Northern Manhattan is Not for Sale, to block the rezoning.
Saunders remanded the matter back to the city to complete a study of the issues raised in the suit, urging the de Blasio administration to “take a hard look at the socio-economic consequences” of its plan.
After the city filed an appeal of the decision in February, the appellate court heard oral arguments in the case on June 11.