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C4 districts are mapped in regional commercial centers, such as Flushing in Queens and the Hub in the Bronx, that are located outside of the central business districts. In these areas, specialty and department stores, theaters and other commercial and office uses serve a larger region and generate more traffic than neighborhood shopping areas. Use Groups 5, 6, 8, 9, 10 and 12, which include most retail establishments, are permitted in C4 districts. Uses that would interrupt the desired continuous retail frontage, such as home maintenance and repair service stores listed in Use Group 7, are not allowed.
C4 districts with an A, D or X suffix are contextual districts in which the commercial and residential bulk and density regulations can differ from corresponding non-contextual districts. Some districts have the same commercial and residential floor area ratios (FAR) as shown in the table, but may differ in parking requirements. Floor area may be increased with a public plaza or Inclusionary Housing Program bonus.
C4-1 districts are mapped in outlying areas, such as the Staten Island Mall, that require large amounts of parking. C4-2 through C4-5 districts are mapped in more densely built areas, such as Steinway Street in Astoria (C4-2A), Fordham Road (C4-4), and parts of Jamaica (C4-5X). C4-6 and C4-7 districts are mapped in densely built areas in Manhattan, including most of Broadway on the Upper West Side (C4-6A) and portions of central Harlem (C4-7).