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In an article that broke today, a Manhattan developer was charged with "subdividing tax lots" in order to get around zoning laws limiting the height of a skyscraper.

What does it mean to subdivide a tax lot and how could one game this in order to get around zoning laws?

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While your linked article doesn't use that term, I think this is talking about 'gerrymandered' zoning lots. This article shows one example lot: Crain’s Reveals Gerrymandered Zoning Lot (Or do an image search for "200 Amsterdam Ave".)

Here, the legal lot includes a bunch of space that is unrelated to the building under construction, apparently in order to provide enough open space to build the size of tower desired.

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