There’s been a plan in place to redevelop a six-acre plot of brownfield land along the Gowanus Canal at Hoyt and 5th streets for almost a decade, and if completed, it would bring hundreds of affordable housing units to an area that is now a polluted wasteland.
The public-private, mixed-income, mixed-use project aims to bring 774 apartments to Gowanus and reconnect the neighborhood with the waterfront of the canal. The development, which has no official address and whose estimated completion date has been pushed back several times, was most recently slated to be completed in 2017, but that is no longer realistic.
The project, which has been in the works since 2008, will consist of both rental apartments and condos, 70 percent of which will be affordable, including more than 100 units of affordable senior housing. There will also be retail and community space, as well as public open space, including a waterfront promenade.
It’s also environmentally conscious: The project will seek LEED certification for its sustainable building materials and energy efficient systems. These include an “an advanced storm water management system” consisting of a rain garden, green roofs and bioswales.
The developer is Hudson Companies in conjunction with New York City, Fifth Avenue Committee, Bluestone Organization and Jonathan Rose Companies. The project was designed by Rogers Marvel Architects, with landscape architects Starr Whitehouse and West 8 involved as well.
However, the project is waiting on the EPA cleanup of the canal, a Superfund site, and also needs to go through its own rezoning and public hearing process to OK the industrial site for residential use — and the site needs its own pollution remediation as well.
“We’re still committed to the project. It’s still alive. We have occasional conversations with the city, but we’re still waiting on the EPA and number of other things. As far as a target date, I just can’t say right now,” Aaron Koffman, principal at Hudson Companies, told Brownstoner. Koffman also mentioned that before anything else can go forward, the developers must do their own environmental remediation, which cannot proceed until the EPA completes theirs.
David Kramer, CEO of Hudson Companies, added that the project is not waiting on the recently revived and much discussed Gowanus rezoning — he also said the “other things” Koffman spoke of refer to remediation and involve National Grid.
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