Mayor Has Big Plans for Downtown Brooklyn

downtown-071614

The mayor from Brooklyn has a vision for downtown: To make it feel more like a community. To that end, he plans to announce a series of initiatives today, The Wall Street Journal reported, including:

*Expanding a 21-acre greenway from the courthouses to the waterfront by linking park spaces.
*Launching a business improvement district association.
*Allowing retail on the ground floor of some buildings owned by the city.
*Improving streets near the Brooklyn Bridge by widening pedestrian areas and installing benches.
*Creating a college consortium composed of the 11 schools in the area with $200,000 in funding from EDC.
*Continuing with some Bloomberg-era efforts, such as reopening BAM Park and building a one-acre park in Willoughby Square.

The area has been rapidly improving, thanks to 5,000 new units of housing and six new hotels since 2004, said a report out yesterday from the Downtown Brooklyn Partnership. Bloomberg spent $400,000,000 upgrading the infrastructure in the area. “Some 7,800 new residential units are in the pipeline, but the area remains plagued by tough-to-navigate intersections and rundown public spaces,” said the WSJ story. “Politicians, residents and local business leaders want to make the area feel more like a community.”

The mayor also hopes the changes will attract more businesses to the area.

According to Alicia Glen, Deputy Mayor for Housing and Economic Development, “There’s all of these interesting things going on in downtown Brooklyn, but it’s not really interconnected in a way that you can walk around and feel like it’s a really positive urban walkability experience.”

Do you think these initiatives would help? How do you think the area could be helped?

A Makeover for Downtown Brooklyn [WSJ]

9 Comment

  • But very little (if any) affordable housing. Thanks, Marty!

  • DT Brooklyn is surrounded by projects — there is enough affordable housing around… That said, this whole ‘plan’ is a bunch of DiBlasio spin… A couple hundred thousand dollars… Means zip. Maybe 10 benches, some grass seed, and a salary for politico friends to run some BS alliance for the colleges…

    • Where? Where is the affordable housing? I will shut my mouth if you can prove this city (Brooklyn) gives a shit about middle class people.

    • Nothing next to the network of paths being discussed.

      I assume bhinsider is referring to the Whitman/Ingersoll housing (and maybe the Farragut houses, but I think of that as a bit further afield. The Whitman and Ingersoll buildings are designed to support about 6,000 residents. These were the same housing units where a few years ago NYCHA was being accused of forcing relocations of tenants to purportedly rehab many of the units but that are then being warehoused empty to depopulate some of the housing projects.

  • Once again, no mention from the city of building a new school as part of all the development. A neighborhood school actually located in Downtown would be a key component to building a greater sense of “community.”

    • probably no mention of building a new school because there is plenty of capacity at the public schools that downtown Brooklyn is zoned for. once again, no mention from downtown Brooklyn residents of rolling up their sleeves to try to help these schools become more attractive to a socio-economically mixed population.

      even if there weren’t space in these schools, there’s no money for prospective construction thanks to Cuomo and the hedge funders making sure that any new school construction money is going to go to the charter schools. of course those aren’t neighborhood schools, but you can always play the lottery for a chance at putting your 4 year old on a bus to Ft. Greene.

  • politicians have big plans for the ageless rite of enriching their pockets of real estate development. no big shock there.

  • So this is what is considered “Big plans” under our new Mayor huh?

    Kinda reminds me of when Howard Golden put all those blue signs and maps in downtown brooklyn…

  • There are over 2,500 units of affordable housing to be built in Downtown BK that are in construction and the pipeline. you have no idea what you’re talking about.