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73-11 General Provisions
Subject to the general findings required by Section 73-03 and in accordance with the provisions contained in Sections 73-12 to 73-35, inclusive, the Board of Standards and Appeals shall have the power to permit special permit uses, and shall have the power to impose appropriate conditions and safeguards thereon.
In the Special Midtown District, the powers of the Board to permit special permit uses are modified by the provisions of Sections 81-13 (Special Permit Use Modifications) and 81-061 (Applicability of Chapter 3 of Article VII).
Except as permitted pursuant to this Chapter, in R3, R4 or R5 Districts, the following uses shall be subject to the height and setback requirements of an R2 District:
Camps

Public utility or public service facilities

Radio and television towers, non-accessory

Riding academies or stables.
73-12 Community Facility Uses in R1, R2, R3-1, R3A, R3X, R4-1, R4A or R4B Districts
In R1, R2, R3-1, R3A, R3X, R4-1, R4A or R4B Districts, the Board of Standards and Appeals may permit specified community facility uses in accordance with the provisions of this Section.
73-121 Colleges or Universities
The Board of Standards and Appeals may permit colleges or universities including professional schools but excluding business colleges or trade schools in R1 or R2 Districts, provided that the following findings are made:
  1. that such use is so located as not to impair the character of the surrounding area or its future development as a neighborhood of single-family residences; and
  2. that such use is so located as to draw a minimum of vehicular traffic to and through local streets.
The Board may prescribe appropriate conditions and safeguards to minimize adverse effects on the character of the surrounding area.
73-122 College or School Student Dormitories or Fraternity or Sorority Student Houses
The Board of Standards and Appeals may permit college or school student dormitories or fraternity or sorority student houses in R1 or R2 Districts, provided that the following findings are made:
  1. that such use does not exceed the maximum floor area ratio for residential use as set forth in Section 23-14 (Open Space and Floor Area Regulations in R1 Through R5 Districts);
  2. that the amount of open space and its distribution on the zoning lot conform to standards appropriate to the character of the neighborhood;
  3. that, notwithstanding the provisions of Section 25-33 (Waiver of Requirements for Spaces Below Minimum Number), at least one accessory off-street parking space is provided for each six beds; and
  4. that such use conforms to all the other applicable Off-street Parking Regulations as set forth in Article II, Chapter 5.
The Board may prescribe appropriate conditions and safeguards to minimize adverse effects on the character of the surrounding area.
73-123 Non-Commercial Clubs
The Board of Standards and Appeals may permit non-commercial clubs, except swimming pool clubs or clubs with swimming pools located less than 500 feet from any lot line, in R1 or R2 Districts, provided that the following findings are made:
  1. that such use is so located as not to impair the character of the surrounding area or its future development as a neighborhood of single-family residences;
  2. that such use is so located as to draw a minimum of vehicular traffic to and through local streets;
  3. that such use complies with the minimum required open space ratio and maximum floor area ratio for residential use as set forth in Section 23-14 (Open Space and Floor Area Regulations in R1 Through R5 Districts);
  4. that not more than half the open space provided is occupied by driveways, private streets, open accessory off-street parking spaces or active outdoor recreation facilities; and
  5. that the amount of open space provided and its distribution on the zoning lot conform to standards appropriate to the character of the neighborhood.
The Board may prescribe appropriate conditions and safeguards to minimize adverse effects on the character of the surrounding area, including requirements for shielding of floodlights, screening or landscaping.
73-124 Welfare Centers
The Board of Standards and Appeals may permit welfare centers in R1 or R2 Districts, provided that the following findings are made:
  1. that such use is so located as not to impair the character of the surrounding area or its future development as a neighborhood of single-family residences; and
  2. that such use is conveniently accessible to the people it serves.
The Board may prescribe appropriate conditions and safeguards to minimize adverse effects on the character of the surrounding area.
73-125 Ambulatory Diagnostic or Treatment Health Care Facilities
In R3A, R3X, R3-1, R4A, R4B or R4-1 Districts, excluding lower density growth management areas, the Board of Standards and Appeals may permit ambulatory diagnostic or treatment health care facilities listed in Use Group 4, limited in each case to a maximum of 10,000 square feet of floor area, provided that the Board finds that the amount of open area and its distribution on the zoning lot conform to standards appropriate to the character of the neighborhood.
The Board may prescribe appropriate conditions and safeguards to minimize adverse effects on the character of the surrounding area.
73-126 Certain Community Facility Uses in Lower Density Growth Management Areas
In R3-1, R3A, R3X, R4-1, R4A or R4B Districts in lower density growth management areas, the Board of Standards and Appeals may permit ambulatory diagnostic or treatment health care facilities listed in Use Group 4, limited in each case to a maximum of 10,000 square feet of floor area, provided that such facilities are located on zoning lots that comply with the minimum lot area and lot width regulations of Section 23-35 (Special Provisions for Zoning Lots Containing Certain Community Facility Uses in Lower Density Growth Management Areas).
In addition, for buildings in R3, R4 and R5 Districts in lower density growth management areas subject to the provisions of paragraph (b) of Section 24-012 (Exceptions to the bulk regulations of this Chapter) the Board may permit the development of a building pursuant to the bulk regulations of Article II, Chapter 4 (Bulk Regulations for Community Facilities in Residence Districts).
In order to grant such special permit, the Board shall find that:
  1. the amount and type of open area and its distribution on the zoning lot is compatible with the character of the neighborhood;
  2. the distribution of bulk on the zoning lot will not unduly obstruct access of light and air to adjoining properties or streets; and
  3. the scale and placement of the building on the zoning lot relates harmoniously with surrounding buildings.

The Board may prescribe appropriate conditions and safeguards to minimize adverse effects on the character of the surrounding area.
73-13 Open Uses in R1 or R2 Districts
In R1 or R2 Districts, the Board of Standards and Appeals may permit outdoor tennis courts or ice skating rinks, provided that the Board finds that such use is so located as not to impair the character of the surrounding area or its future development as a neighborhood of single-family residences.
The Board shall prescribe the following conditions:
  1. that such use and any accessory facilities affixed to the land are not located closer than 20 feet to any lot line; and
  2. that all lighting is directed away from nearby zoning lots containing residences.
The Board may prescribe additional appropriate conditions and safeguards to minimize adverse effects on the character of the surrounding area, including requirements for screening or for landscaping.
73-14 Public Service Establishments
In all Residence Districts, the Board of Standards and Appeals may permit electric or gas utility substations, limited in each case to a site of not more than 10,000 square feet, potable water pumping stations, or telephone exchanges or other communications equipment structures, provided that the following findings are made:
  1. that such use will serve the residential area within which it is proposed to be located; that there are serious difficulties in locating it in a district wherein it is permitted as of right and from which it could serve the residential area, which make it necessary to locate such use within a Residence District; and
  2. in the case of such electric or gas utility substations or potable water pumping stations, that the site for such use has a minimum lot area of 4,500 square feet.
The Board may prescribe appropriate conditions or safeguards to minimize adverse effects on the character of the surrounding area, including requirements that electric utility substations shall meet the performance standards for an M1 District; that such electric or gas utility substations or potable water pumping stations shall be surrounded with fences, barriers, or other safety devices; or that any such use shall be landscaped.
73-15 Other Public Utility Facilities
In all Residence Districts, the Board of Standards and Appeals may permit public utility stations for oil or gas metering or regulating, or terminal facilities located at river crossings for access to electric, gas or steam lines, provided that the Board finds that the proposed location, design and method of operation will not have a detrimental effect on the privacy and quiet of the neighborhood and the safety of its inhabitants.
The Board may prescribe appropriate conditions and safeguards to minimize adverse effects on the character of the surrounding area, including requirements for construction of fences, barriers or other safety devices, or for landscaping.
73-16 Public Transit, Railroad or Electric Utility Substations
In all Residence and Commercial Districts, and in M1 Districts in the Special Downtown Jamaica District, the Board of Standards and Appeals may permit electric utility substations (including transformers, switches, or auxiliary apparatus) or public transit or railroad electric substations, limited in each case to a site of not more than 40,000 square feet, and in the case of electric utility substations to a site of not less than 10,000 square feet, provided that the following findings are made:
  1. that such use will serve either the residential community within which it is proposed to be located or the residential community immediately adjacent, and that there are serious difficulties in locating such use in a nearby district where it is permitted as-of-right;
  2. in the case of public transit or railroad electric substations, that the site for such use has a minimum frontage of 50 feet and a minimum lot area of 4,500 square feet;
  3. that the site for such use is so located in Residence Districts as to minimize the adverse effects on the integrity of existing and future development, or is so located in Commercial Districts as to minimize the interruption of the continuity of retail frontage;
  4. that the architectural and landscaping treatment of such use will blend harmoniously with the rest of the area; and
  5. that such use will conform to the performance standards applicable to M1 Districts.
The Board may prescribe appropriate conditions and safeguards to minimize adverse effects on the character of the surrounding area, including requirements for soundproofing, for the construction of fences, barriers, or other safety devices, for screening of apparatus, or for landscaping.
73-17 Camps, Overnight or Outdoor Day
In all Residence Districts, and in C1, C2 or C3 Districts, the Board of Standards and Appeals may permit overnight or outdoor day camps, whether commercial or philanthropic, for a term not to exceed five years, provided that the Board finds that such use will not cause excessive traffic congestion.
The Board shall prescribe the following conditions:
  1. that a minimum of 150 square feet of lot area is provided for each child enrolled in the camp;
  2. that along any rear or side lot lines, yards are provided, each with a minimum depth (or width) of 40 feet, within which no camp equipment is affixed to the land;
  3. that in Residence Districts or C3 Districts the zoning lot is screened along the rear and side lot lines, and in C1 or C2 Districts along any rear or side lot line adjoining a Residence District, by a strip at least four feet wide, densely planted with shrubs or trees which are at least four feet high at the time of planting and which are of a type which may be expected to form a year-round dense screen at least six feet high within three years; and
  4. that in the case of outdoor day camps, for each 6,000 square feet of lot area, one accessory off-street parking space of 500 square feet is provided to accommodate buses used in the transportation of campers, in addition to the accessory off-street parking requirement established for such uses under the applicable provisions of Sections 25-31 or 36-21 (General Provisions).
The Board may prescribe additional appropriate conditions and safeguards to minimize adverse effects on the character of the surrounding area.
73-18 Riding Academies or Stables
In all Residence Districts, and in C2, C6 or C7 Districts, the Board of Standards and Appeals may permit riding academies or stables operated as a recreation service, for a term not to exceed five years, provided that the following findings are made:
  1. that such use is so located as not to impair the essential character of the surrounding area;
  2. that adequate horseback riding facilities are available on the same zoning lot or within 600 feet of such zoning lot;
  3. that the location and operation of such use will not be such as to result in any serious traffic hazards or conflicts on nearby streets; and
  4. that in Residence Districts, no stables or riding areas are located within 40 feet of any side or rear lot line.
The Board may prescribe appropriate conditions and safeguards to minimize adverse effects on the character of the surrounding area, including requirements for sanitation, for screening, or for landscaping.
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