Use Group 12 NYC Entertainment Zoning

by | May 20, 2019 | NYC Zoning

The NYC Zoning Resolution has Use Groups to categorize buildings based on their use. NYC Zoning Use Group 12 is mostly large entertainment uses and some retail uses.


Zoning NYC Use Group 12

Certificate Of Occupancy for Use Group 12

Use Groups are listed on the Certificate Of Occupancy for a building. Use Group 12 has five categories. A Certificate Of Occupancy or CO for Use Group 12 would identify the use of spaces as:

  • 12A 
  • 12B
  • 12C
  • 12D
  • 12E

Use Group 12A Amusement Establishments

  • Arenas or Auditoriums up to 2,500 seats
  • Billiard parlor or pool halls
  • Bowling alleys with no limit on number of lanes or table tennis halls
  • Eating or drinking establishments with entertainment and capacity over 200 people
  • Historical exhibits, within a building
  • Indoor golf centers
  • Model car hobby center, including racing, with no limit on floor area
  • Public auction rooms
  • Indoor Skating rinks
  • Stadiums, up to 2,500 seats
  • Trade expos up to 2,500 people

Use Group 12B Retail

Use Group 12B consists of certain retail uses.

  • Antique stores
  • Commercial Art galleries
  • Book stores
  • Candy or ice cream stores
  • Cigar and tobacco stores or Vape Shops
  • Delicatessen
  • Drug stores
  • Gift shops
  • Jewelry Stores
  • Music stores
  • Newsstands
  • Photographic equipment stores
  • Record stores
  • Stationery stores
  • Toy stores

Use Group 12C

Use Group 12C is for Certain Public Services

  • Police Stations
  • Water or Sewer Pumping stations

Use Group 12D

Use Group 12D is for Public Parking with 150 spaces or less.

Use Group 12E

Use Group 12E is for accessory uses to the other uses in Group 12.


Where Can You Build Use Group 12 in NYC?

Commercial Zoning Districts

You can develop Use Group 12 in certain commercial districts in NYC:

  • C4 General Commercial
  • C6 General Central Commercial
  • C7 Commercial Amusement
  • C8 General Service

Manufacturing Zoning Districts

Manufacturing Zones allow for Use Group 12


NYC Zoning Use Group 12

As an architect I study 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 NYC Zoning Use Group 12. 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 Use Group 12 in the NYC Zoning Code.

I hope this was helpful. Please leave questions and comments below. If you would like to speak with an architect you can Contact Fontan Architecture directly.


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 15 years where he has designed renovations and new developments of various building types.

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