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Friday, December 30, 2011

Flatbush: Residents Divided Over Expansion Of Shaarei Zion

GRAVESEND - Plans to expand a Gravesend synagogue on Ocean Parkway have divided nearby residents on the issue as some say they're not bothered with the expansion, but others see the proposed structure as an eyesore in their neighborhood.

The Shaare Zion Synagogue hopes to expand the 60-year-old house of worship to six stories, angering some local residents. Some are concerned about its impact on neighborhood aesthetics, while others worry about how much worse parking could get.

Community Board 15 rejected the plan last week in a 19-13 vote, but the vote was only an advisory one, so the Shaare Zion Synagogue can still move forward with obtaining approval from the Standard and Appeals board.

Neighbors say the expansion will provide additional classrooms and prayer space for the nearly 700 families who are members of the large Sephardic Shul.

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