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WHAT IS A "HEALTH AND FITNESS ESTABLISHMENT" AND WHY IS IT NO LONGER A "PHYSICAL CULTURAL ESTABLISHMENT"?

A recent adoption of the NYC zoning text (Dec. 9, 2021), amended what we previously referred to as a “Physical Cultural Establishment” (PCE). The City Council voted on this amendment to end several decades of antiquated regulations and help the fitness industry recover from the COVID-19 pandemic.

Previously, PCE’s required a special permit from the Board of Standards and Appeals which put an unfair burden on legitimate businesses. We moved the popular diagram we developed as it’s no longer relevant.

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THE CHANGES YOU NEED TO KNOW REGARDING "HEALTH AND FITNESS ESTABLISHMENT"

Some major changes associated with the zoning amendment are as follows:

  • PCE is no longer a term defined by ZR12-10; instead, 2 new terms have replaced it. One is “health and fitness establishment” and the other is “unlicensed physical treatment establishment
  • The Board of Standards and Appeals (BSA) no longer retains jurisdiction over PCE special permits as ZR73-36 has been removed.
  • Perhaps most important is that health and fitness establishments are permitted to operate as-of-right in the appropriate zoning districts and use groups.
    • All facilities up to 10,000sf shall be either use group 6 in C1, C2, C4, C5, C6, C8, M1, M2 and M3 districts or use group 14 in C2, C3, C7 and C8 districts.
    • All facilities over 10,000sf shall be use group 9 in C2, C4, C5, C6, C8, M1, M2, M3; and certain high-density C1 districts.
  • There are new rules on sound mitigation for high-intensity and low-intensity use cases as outlined in ZR32-413.
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WHAT ARE MY NEXT STEPS...

If you are looking to discuss your future plans to open a Health and Fitness Establishment or are still unsure about the process, please reach out to our office for clarification. If you wish to learn more about the impact this zoning amendment has on your business, we’ve compiled some resources to add to your arsenal of knowledge on the topic.

Everything you need to know about NYC’s health and fitness text amendment
NYC officials have introduced a new health and fitness text amendment to update the city’s existing zoning resolutions regarding physical fitness facilities.

Milrose Consultants discuss the changes to PCE’s

City Planning Commission Report (N 210382 ZRY)
IN THE MATTER OF an application submitted by New York City Department of City Planning, pursuant to Section 201 of the New York City Charter, for an amendment of the Zoning Resolution of the City…

CPC Report (N 210382 ZRY)

Mayor de Blasio Celebrates Approval of City Zoning Initiatives to Advance Health Equity

NYC Mayor Press Release