Some More 411 on the “Schermerhorn House”

More details are starting to emerge about the multi-phase development project that began with the 14 Townhouses. First, half of the 217 units at the “Schermerhorn House” will provide housing for the formerly homeless and people with special needs while the rest will be for low-income workers and artists. According to the Fort Greene Courier, residents will live in 185-square-foot studios and pay one-third of their income toward rent.

In other areas of the project…a number of artists and designers will show their work in one of the 14 Townhouses this summer as part of something called “blockparty.” (This is not a huge surprise given that Francis Greenburger, the head of Time Equities, has been very involved with the arts for years.) Also, it turns out that, in addition to Time Equities and Hamlin Ventures, others with equity in the project include the Actors’ Fund of America and Common Ground Community. Common Ground is going to manage the building and the Actors’ Fund will cover on-site social services.

The Brooklyn Eagle also reports that Abby Hamlin is actively trying to organize resistance to the reopening of the House of Detention–which is just a block away. All the negative press around the return of convicts to the upwardly-mobile stretch of Atlantic can’t be helping to sell $2.6 million houses.
Housing Takes Center Stage [Brooklyn Eagle]
New Home for Artists and Others [Fort Greene Courier]

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  • I’ve been following this development a bit, and if I’m not mistaken, only half of the units will be for formerly homeless, special needs, and actors (or is that formerly homeless actors with special needs?); the other half of the building will be market rate. I did not know studios are going to be 185 sq ft (!), so don’t know if this size would apply to the market rate units. If so, what do you think the market rate is for an 18 x 10 ft studio at this locatioin?

  • If someone thinks 18 x 10 is an apartment they should just move into the detention center. Rooms there must be that big.

  • Not to be a hypothetical “nimby.” But I’m not ready to spend $2.6 million to live adjacent to a jail, a police station, a post-homeless person building, a block from Daytop and a block from an active firehouse.

  • Then don’t live in this neighborhood. I have been here for a long time and like the jail, Daytop, and the courts just fine. And the firehouse is good people, too.

  • Defensive much?

    I’m not talking about the neighborhood, which is fine. I’m talking about the development and State Street. It’s going to be a tough sell, and you know it.

    That’s a lot of “action” around super expensive houses. If you like the block so much, let’s see your name on a signed contract for one of these babies.

    I doubt it.

  • I think it is great and a refreshing change for development in this Borough.

    Also, I would note that there is lots of evidence that “supportive housing” for post-homeless people (where services are oferred on site and social workers assist with the transition) is not only very effective but also leads to a big cost savings for all taxpayers. Emergency housing and shelters are far more expensive. So, it is a win/win.

  • 10:45, why worry about low income people when you are having problems with writing in English here? Gawd, the snobbery here gets to be overwhelming sometimes. You and 5:09 need to find a nice gated community somewhere far from the the mix of people, situations, incomes and jobs to be had by us mortal folk here in New York City.

    Kudos to any group who is financing ligitmate alternatives in housing, in a desirable area, for groups that are usually excluded or marginalized to the outer parts of the outer boroughs. The studios are rather small, true, but something is better than nothing. If you’ve been out on the street, or institutionalized, having your own private space, however small, means a lot. I would imagine food services and recreational and gathering spaces are provided somewhere in the building.

  • A few years ago my girlfriend had a fellowship with Common Ground, and recieved free housing in their times sq. building. While the space was small, it wasn’t awful – we even entertained occasionally (on a very small scale). They screen all residents, so there is nothing to worry about – filled with creative, eclectic folks. And for the NIMBY’s that aren’t aware, there is already supportive housing in the ‘hood – Atlantic @ Nevins.

  • I love the idea of this building and what it intends to do. Having lived in that area for over 20 years, and only a block from the jail- on Schermerhorn actually, the only hesitation I would have from plunking down that kind of money there is that I don’t have any. And if I remember correctly, food shopping will be a fair walk away. This is such a creative approach to housing, and a healthy one. Wish there were more like it going up. As far as police stations and fire houses, they make great neighbors.

  • This is something i think is great for those struggling people in the arts, and people who are trying to get back on there feet. There’s alot this building have to offer for all to whom it may concern. Just keep away from the hiv positive people, and you’ll be fine.