Big Changes (Apartments) in Works for Crown Heights Industrial Area

Photo by Rebecca


In a major about-face, Community Board 8 wants to rezone an industrial area in northern Crown Heights to allow residential buildings. It would allow taller buildings and require subsidies for the housing, to make it affordable to those earning the median in the area.

The board voted yes Thursday to send a request to City Planning to study the area for a rezoning, DNAinfo reported. Readers may recall that a similar request from neighboring Community Board 9 has been bogged down in controversy for more than a year.

This is a major change of direction for the board, which a few years ago rejected an attempt by a group of artists to create artist-owned live-work housing in a building in the area. The board wanted to keep the area industrial to limit gentrification in the area.

The six-block area in question is zoned M-1 and is concentrated around Atlantic to Bergen Street between Grand and Franklin avenues.

Now the board is taking another means to the same ends, apparently, by requiring subsidies for the housing instead of no housing. Two apartment buildings in the area are already in the works, both located in the former Nassau brewery complex. Pictured above is the older part of the Nassau complex, which is being restored.

If we read the story correctly, the board is pushing for 100 percent subsidized housing. Whether you favor that or not, if the board succeeds, it will be an unprecedented move, and one likely to have far-reaching implications for development in other rapidly gentrifying areas in Brooklyn.

Crown Heights Community Board Backs Land Use Changes for Manufacturing Zone [DNA]
Should Crown Heights’ Manufacturing Zone Be Rezoned for Residential? [Brownstoner]

Update: The board is asking for at least 20 percent affordable (subsidized) housing. The percentage would be based on square footage, not number of units, a reader told us. It would also be permanently affordable. You can read the full text of the resolution here.

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