Special Limited Commercial District Zoning NYC

by | Last updated Feb 6, 2021 | NYC Zoning

In NYC there are areas designated as a Special Limited Commercial District in Historic Districts. The Zoning Districts are meant to control the types of use for buildings within these historic districts.

The Landmarks Preservation Commission designates certain areas as Historic Districts. Within these historic districts there can be a Limited Commercial District as well. The following are the uses allowed within the Limited Commercial District.


NYC Special Limited Commercial Zoning Uses

The New York City Zoning Resolution has Use Groups for all the different possible uses of a building. Certain zoning districts allow certain Use Groups. The Special Limited Commercial District allows uses in Use Group LC.

Use Group LC includes uses in Residential Uses:

It also includes certain commercial uses from Use Groups:

Use Group LC

LC Use Group, A: Amusements

  • Theaters up to 300 seats

LC Use Group, B: Community Facilities

  • Ambulatory diagnostic or treatment health care facilities listed in Use Group 4
  • Community Facility Clubs that qualify
  • Colleges or universities, including professional schools
  • College or school student dormitories or fraternity or sorority student houses
  • Community centers or settlement houses
  • Houses of worship, rectories or parish houses
  • Libraries, museums, or non-commercial art galleries
  • Long Term Care Facilities
  • Monasteries, Convents, & Novitiates
  • Non-commercial recreation centers
  • Non-profit hospital staff dwelling
  • Non-profit or voluntary hospitals and related facilities, except animal hospitals
  • Philanthropic or non-profit institutions
  • Proprietary hospitals and related facilities, except animal hospitals
  • Schools
  • Seminaries
  • Welfare centers

LC Use Group, C: Open Uses

  • Public Parks, playgrounds, or private parks
  • Outdoor Skating Rinks

LC Use Group, D: Convenience Retail or Service Establishments

  • Bakeries, with production floor area limited to 750 square feet
  • Barber shops
  • Beauty parlors
  • Drug stores
  • Dry Cleaner up to 2,000 square feet (and other restrictions)
  • Eating and drinking establishments up to 200 people
  • Food stores, including supermarkets, grocery stores, meat markets, or delicatessen stores, up to 10,000 square feet
  • Hardware stores
  • Laundry establishments
  • Package liquor stores
  • Post offices
  • Shoe or hat repair shops
  • Stationery stores
  • Tailor or dressmaking shops, custom
  • Variety stores, up to 10,000 square feet

LC Use Group, E: Offices

  • Offices, business, professional or governmental

LC Use Group, F: Public Service Establishments

  • Court houses
  • Electric or gas utility substations up to 10,000 square feet

LC Use Group, G: Retail or Service Establishments

  • Antique stores
  • Art galleries
  • Artists’ supply stores
  • Automobile supply stores
  • Banks
  • Bicycle sales
  • Blueprinting or photostatting establishments
  • Book stores
  • Business schools or colleges
  • Candy or ice cream stores
  • Carpet, rug, linoleum, or other floor covering stores up to 10,000 square feet
  • Catering establishments
  • Cigar or tobacco stores
  • Clothing or clothing accessory stores, up to 10,000 square feet
  • Clothing or costume rental establishments
  • Dry goods or fabrics stores up to 10,000 square feet
  • Electrolysis studios
  • Fishing tackle or equipment, rental or sales
  • Florist shops
  • Frozen food lockers
  • Furniture stores, up to 10,000 square feet
  • Furrier shops, custom
  • Gift shops
  • Gymnasiums, used exclusively for basketball, handball, squash and tennis
  • Interior decorating establishments (with restrictions)
  • Jewelry or art metal craft shops
  • Leather goods or luggage stores
  • Loan offices
  • Locksmith
  • Medical or dental laboratories
  • Medical or orthopedic appliance stores
  • Meeting halls
  • Millinery shops
  • Music stores
  • Musical instrument repair shops
  • Newsstands, open or enclosed
  • Optician or optometrist establishments
  • Paint stores
  • Pet shops
  • Photographic equipment or supply stores
  • Photographic studios
  • Physical Culture Health Establishments
  • Picture framing shops
  • Plumbing, heating, or ventilating equipment showrooms, without repair facilities
  • Record stores
  • Seed or garden supply stores
  • Sewing machine stores, selling household machines only
  • Shoe stores
  • Sporting or athletic stores
  • Stamp or coin stores
  • Studios: art, music, dancing or theatrical
  • Telegraph offices
  • Television, radio, phonograph, or household appliance repair shops
  • Television, radio, phonograph, or household appliance stores, up to 10,000 square feet
  • Toy stores
  • Trade, or other schools for adults (with some restrictions)
  • Travel bureaus
  • Small business machine repair shops
  • Umbrella repair shops
  • Wallpaper stores
  • Watch or clock stores or repair shops

LC Use Group, H: Transient Accommodations

  • Hotels

LC Use Group, I: wholesale Establishments

  • Hair products for headwear, wholesaling including styling
  • Photographic developing or printing establishments up to 2,500 square feet

LC Use Group, J: Accessory Uses

  • Accessory Uses to the above listed uses


Special Limited Commercial District

As an architect I study Building Codes and Zoning Codes closely, but these are complicated and quite involved issues. In this article we reviewed some of the basic concepts with regards to The Special Limited Commercial Zoning District. This post does not assume to cover every possible issue or condition, but provide a general overview of the topic.


Thank you for reading our blog post on Limited Commercial Special District Requirements.

I hope this was helpful. If you would like to speak with an architect, you can contact us at Fontan Architecture directly.


Contact Fontan Architecture


Jorge Fontan

Jorge Fontan

This post was written by Jorge Fontan AIA a Registered Architect and owner of New York City architecture firm Fontan Architecture. Jorge Fontan has earned 3 degrees in the study of architecture including two degrees from the City University of New York and a Masters Degree in Advanced Architectural Design from Columbia University. Jorge has a background in construction and has been practicing architecture for 20 years where he has designed renovations and new developments of various building types.