Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams, who grew up on Gates near Broadway, wants to upzone Broadway from Williamsburg to East New York. The proposal was buried in a recommendation to the City Council about a review of a six-story mixed-use housing project called Henry Apartments in Ocean Hill, reported The New York Daily News.
Adams envisions 10 story buildings with 50 percent market rate apartments, 30 percent middle income and 20 percent low income. The upzoned area would stretch for four miles from where the BQE crosses Broadway at Marcy in South Williamsburg to Broadway Junction in East New York, cutting through Bushwick, Bed Stuy, and Ocean Hill along the way. The stretch through Bushwick, Bed Stuy and Ocean Hill is dotted with empty lots from arson fires, looting and blackouts of the 1970s.
If the proposal succeeds, it will set off a huge land rush of development and gentrification along the corridor. However, we just don’t see how it would be possible to build comfortable apartments here. The J, M and Z trains run on an elevated track along exactly this path. Triple-paned glass and other measures don’t seem like they would offset the incredible noise and vibrations. Today, even with skyrocketing property values and rents pushing people into every imaginable cranny, there is still virtually no residential use of the corridor today, legal or illegal. Above the retail street level, the buildings are almost all used for storage or simply empty.
Above, an empty lot on Broadway in Bushwick. After the jump, another empty lot on Broadway in Ocean Hill/Bed Stuy.
What do you think of the idea?