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§ 4-604. City Planning Commission. 100
(a) Physical Development Plan of the City. The City Planning Commission shall prepare and adopt, from time to time modify, and have custody of a comprehensive plan of the City showing its present and planned physical development. The comprehensive plan shall be known as the Physical Development Plan of the City and shall show the general location, character and extent of streets, parks, recreation facilities, sites for public buildings and structures, pierhead and bulkhead lines, City and privately owned utility facilities, waterways, water conduits and such other features as will provide for the improvement of the City and its future growth and development and afford adequate facilities for the housing, transportation, distribution, health and welfare of its population. The Physical Development Plan may be prepared as a whole or in successive parts corresponding to major geographical sections of the City or to functional subdivisions of the subject matter of the plan, as the Commission shall determine. The Commission shall transmit the Physical Development Plan or any part and any modification thereof to the Mayor and to the Council.
Law Department Note (2017): The following Annotation originally followed former Section 4-600, Physical Development Plan of the City (now subsection (a) of this section).
Sources: New York City Charter, 1938, Section 197; Model City Charter (1941) Sections 130 and 131.
Purposes: 1. The orderly physical development of a city requires current and long-term planning. A master development plan is an important aid to such planning and the Physical Development Plan will furnish the City with such a plan. The Plan is required to show structures and physical and natural conditions subject to regulation, control or modification by the City and important to the physical development of the City. Development of the City is used in the broad sense to include structures and conditions affecting the housing, distribution, health and welfare of its population.
2. Since the preparation of the over-all Physical Development Plan is a task of major proportions, provision is made for its preparation in successive parts, according to geographical subdivisions of the City, or by functional subdivisions, such as transportation, housing, water supply, and the like.
3. It is a duty of the Commission to prepare the Plan and then to submit it and modifications of it to the Mayor and City Council so that both the executive and legislative branches of the government will be apprised of its content when considering any action which may impinge upon it.
4. While there is no express provision for the Commission to hold hearings on its proposals concerning the Physical Development Plan, such hearings are not precluded and, as a matter of sound procedure and good public relations, should be held.
(b) Proposed Zoning Ordinances, Maps and Amendments. The City Planning Commission shall prepare proposed zoning ordinances, which may embody regulations and maps, and amendments thereto, and submit such proposed zoning ordinances and amendments thereto to the Mayor for transmission to the Council.
Law Department Note (2017): The following Annotation originally followed former Section 4-601, Proposed Zoning Ordinances, Maps and Amendments (now subsection (b) of this section).
Sources: New York City Charter, 1938, Section 200; Model City Charter (1941) Section 127.
Purposes: 1. The zoning laws of a city should be related to its physical development planning. This relationship is to be achieved by having the City Planning Commission prepare proposed zoning ordinances, which as a matter of practice may embody regulations and maps. However, the enactment of proposed zoning ordinances into law is a function of the Council.
(c) Capital Program and Budget. At least one hundred and twenty days before the end of the fiscal year, the City Planning Commission shall prepare and submit to the Mayor a recommended capital program for the six fiscal years next ensuing and a recommended capital budget for the ensuing fiscal year.
Law Department Note (2017): The following Annotation originally followed former Section 4-602, Capital Program and Budget (now subsection (c) of this section).
Sources: New York City Charter, 1938, Section 218; Model City Charter (1941) Section 127.
Purposes: 1. The capital program and capital budget are vital steps in planned city development. For that reason their initial preparation is a function of the City Planning Commission.
(d) Streets and Land Subdivision. The City Planning Commission shall prepare regulations governing the subdivision of land and submit them to the Mayor for transmission to Council. The Commission shall approve or disapprove plans of streets and revisions of such plans, and land subdivision plans, except that if it fails to act within forty-five days, its approval may be presumed.
Law Department Note (2017): The following Annotation originally followed former Section 4-603, Streets and Land Subdivision (now subsection (d) of this section).
Sources: No specific source.
Purposes: 1. The laying out of city streets and the subdivision of city land are integral parts of planned city development. For this reason, regulations governing the subdivision of land, as well as the approval or disapproval of plans of streets and revision of such plans and land subdivision plans, fall within the province of the City Planning commission. The Commission has forty-five days instead of thirty to approve such matters because of their technical nature.
(e) Recommendations to Council. The City Planning Commission shall make recommendations, to be transmitted to the Council through the Mayor, on all bills originating in the Council which shall in any manner affect any zoning ordinance, the Physical Development Plan of the City, or the capital program, or which would authorize the acquisition or sale of City real estate. Unless such recommendations are received by the Council within thirty days from the date any such bill shall have been introduced, the approval of the Commission shall be presumed.
Law Department Note (2017): The following Annotation originally followed former Section 4-604, Recommendations to Council (now subsection (e) of this section).
Sources: No specific source.
Purposes: 1. The recommendations of the City Planning Commission are required on all legislation originating in the Council which affects in any manner any subject matter within the jurisdiction of the Commission so that Council will have an opportunity to be advised of the effect of such proposed legislation on City development. The Commission with its expert knowledge and its facilities for appraising all such legislation is thus required to render technical assistance to the Council to enable the Council to act in a completely informed manner in this area. To assure the Council of necessary freedom on action, the Commission is required to furnish its report to the Council within specified time limits.
2. Council, after it has received the recommendations of the Commission, or if the Commission fails to act within the required time, remains free to take such action with respect to the proposed legislation as it deems fit. See Section 2-307. It is not required that the Commission's action shall be binding on the Council or that more than a majority vote of the Council shall be necessary to override the Commission's recommendation because experience in other cities indicates that such restrictions are not in the best interests of well-planned city development.
3. While the Charter does not require public hearings before the Commission on matters upon which the Commission is empowered to act, such hearings are required to be held whenever any matter within the jurisdiction of the Commission reaches the legislative stage. See Section 2-201. The Physical Development Plan is not to be adopted legislatively, but good Commission procedure and public relations will result in the Commission scheduling hearings on important aspects of the Plan. The Commission is not precluded from holding public hearings on other matters within its jurisdiction and here too sound procedure and good public relations should result in hearings being held on important questions.
Added by approval of the voters at the election held on November 3, 2015, and certified on November 23, 2015. See Bill No. 140721 (approved June 16, 2015); Resolution No. 140732-A (adopted June 11, 2015). See Charter subsection A-200(14) for effective date. Former Charter Sections 4-600, 4-601, 4-602, 4-603 and 4-604 were consolidated into this new Section 4-604 as subsections (a), (b), (c), (d) and (e), respectively. Annotations following each of those former sections are included at the end each corresponding subsection.