Developer of Embattled Crown Heights Armory Redevelopment Takes on Community Partner

Rendering via BFC Partners

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Amid swirling controversy, the developer of the embattled Bedford-Union Armory project in Crown Heights Wednesday announced a new nonprofit partner, an affordable housing fund, and plans to create a community advisory committee.

Years in the making, the current plans to redevelop the historic armory at 1555 Bedford Avenue include a community recreational facility with office space and 330 rental units and 60 condos. Initially slated for 50 percent affordable housing, now half of the rental units and 12 of the condos will be affordable, according to recent reports.

bedford union armory crown heights non profit

Rendering via BFC Partners

Local pols and community activists have been calling for the developer, BFC Partners, to make the complex 100 percent affordable since last year when developer Slate Property Group was embroiled in the Rivington House scandal and dropped out of the project.

For the project to move forward, it must go through the official ULURP public land use review process and City Council vote.

bedford union armory crown heights non profit

Rendering via BFC Partners

A public scoping meeting, an initial step before review kicks off, is set for Tuesday — and is likely to be contentious.

Developer BFC Partners has brought on community nonprofit Local Development Corporation of Crown Heights as a development partner. The partners will create an affordable housing fund to “support the creation of more affordable housing, tenant advocacy and housing education throughout Crown Heights,” the group said in a prepared statement.

bedford union armory crown heights non profit

The Armory in 2014. Photo by Rebecca Baird-Remba

The development corporation will also “host” the forthcoming Bedford-Union Armory Community Advisory Committee, which will be “comprised of local residents and stakeholders throughout the Crown Heights and Central Brooklyn communities” and have input on the recreational portion of the project.

The Bedford-Union Armory has sat in Crown Heights for over a century. Built in 1903, it had troops stationed there until 2011 when they were moved to Fort Hamilton. The city has been seeking to redevelop the site since at least 2013, when it issued a call for proposals.

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