1568 Broadway, The Palace Theater, seeks an amendment and a certification to construct a large New Sign Structure with terraces and balconies behind it, a portion of which will be occupied by an entertainment-related use.
WHEREAS, Applicant is seeking to amend zoning text ZR81-732(a)(3)(vi) and ZR81-75I(a)(3)(iii) which would allow for a uniform, 18,195 square foot sign profile and permit a variety of sign images and allow for six floors of balconies and terraces behind the sign for uses including revenue-generating entertainment purposes; and
WHEREAS, Both amendments seeks to alter zoning text applicable to lots in excess of 15,000 square feet and containing a listed theater having a portion within 100 feet of Broadway and Seventh Avenue; and
WHEREAS, Current zoning text requires a 100-foot setback of marquee signs in Times Square; and
WHEREAS, The proposed sign would be a singular, wraparound sign that could display multiple entertainment or commercial advertisements simultaneously, replacing the need for multiple signs as required by zoning code; and
WHEREAS, The proposed sign will be high-resolution, elevated above-sidewalk entrance (moved to 47th Street); and
WHEREAS, The proposed sign will include a centrally (facing Times Square) located opening mechanism that will allow for a stage to appear from the internal balcony structure that will make public access of internal (non-mainstage) performances visible and will make Times Square visible to those on the balconies; and
WHEREAS, The stage within the sign will be designed to open and close throughout the day; and
WHEREAS, The proposed design relies on the construction of internal balconies to deliver this component of the sign design; and
WHEREAS, Community Board Five supports the complete redesign of the Palace Theater and believes that in so doing, an enormous service to the public is rendered including: 1) additional sidewalk space on 47th Street, 2) the restoration of an historic theater, 3) continued development of the theater district and 4) a new theater entrance that will eliminate pedestrian bottlenecks on 7th Avenue; and
WHEREAS, Amending the zoning text to allow for an exemption at 1568 Broadway of the required signage setback and the construction of balconies does not constitute a precedent for such approvals in the future by Community Board Five; and
WHEREAS, Community Board Five is committed to reviewing applications for future projects with similar zoning text amendments singularly and recognizes the unique nature of this project as it is part of a complete redesign of the theater; therefore be it
RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the zoning text amendments requested by the applicant who is seeking to amend zoning text ZR81-732(a)(3)(vi) and ZR81-75I(a)(3)(iii) which would allow for a uniform, 18,195 square foot sign profile and permit a variety of sign images and allow for six floors of balconies and terraces behind the sign for uses including revenue-generating entertainment purposes.