Wednesday, 27 July 2016

Once ‘Blighted’ Park Slope Block Will Give Rise to New Condo Building

The building by Arbie Development will join other condos along Brooklyn’s Fourth Avenue

Yet another lot on Fourth Avenue in Park Slope is set to become — wait for it — luxury condos, reports DNAInfo. Back in May, Arbie Development bought the property at the corner of Fourth Avenue and Butler Street for $4.35 million. Right now, the site is home to a three-story townhouse, but the young development company — which so far has focused mainly on "gut renovations and townhouses in Bed-Stuy and Crown Heights" — has plans to turn the property into a swanky eight-story condo building, featuring wrap-around balconies and, for the two penthouses, private roof decks. Earlier this month, Arbie filed for a demolition permit, and if all goes according to plan, 141 Fourth Ave should be finished by 2018.

It’s a far cry from the days when the same property was a "a dumping ground used by rival Puerto Rican gangs for ‘rumbles.’" DNAInfo lays out the history: Back in the early 1970s, the city tore down 400 units of housing on the site, with the intention of building a new school. Then, the economy soured. They ran out of money and abandoned the project.

In the ’80s, after more a decade of fighting for it, Park Slope locals got the city to create an urban renewal plan to resuscitate the area, calling for new housing and a Key Food grocery store. The housing was Park Slope Village, a cluster of 56 three-story townhouses, including 344 Butler Street, the townhouse Arbie plans to tear down for the condos. (The Key Food was … a Key Food, now the site of its own redevelopment controversy.)

Which brings us (almost) to today: in 2003, Fourth Avenue was rezoned to allow for construction of much taller buildings, thus the current condofication of the avenue. But critically, the 2003 rezoning did not require that developers to include any affordable housing. Like the rest of the condos along Fourth Ave, there are no affordability restrictions on the Arbie property. Nice balconies, though.—Rachel Sugar


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