Jordan Most, an attorney who presented the application to Community Board 5 March 14, said the BSA has to approve a permit to allow a parking lot next to residential buildings.
The Department of Buildings (DOB) issues permits for parking within a 25-foot commercial zone, but the bank's parking lot stretches 28 feet, so the BSA has to issue a special permit.
Most said it is unclear how the former video store received a permit and that DOB refused to grandfather it over to T.D. Bank, he said.
Prior to the CB5 meeting, a T.D. Bank representative said the branch will offer seven-day banking with extended hours and loan to local businesses.
In addition, it will hire about 15 full and part-time employees from the community, he said.
But the opening of the branch could take several months to accomplish, as T.D. Bank needs approval from the community and the city before construction can start.
Along with parking, the bank intends to use the 25-foot lot for landscaping and drive-through banking, Most said.
The bank will also add a curb cut to the sidewalk to allow cars to enter and exit the lot, Most said.
It also intends to tear down the existing structure and construct a new building.
Most said he suggested using the existing building, “but T.D. Bank, as you probably have seen, like a lot of banks they have a very rigid formula that they adhere to” regarding construction.
While some board members expressed concern that a new curb cut will remove parking spaces, Maspeth resident Nick Gervasi, who's lived in the house next to the lot for the last 40 years, said the bank would not disrupt traffic on 53rd Road.
“I think it would be an asset to have a bank right there,” he said. “A bank would be suitable for me, I'm sure my neighbors also.”