Artists ok’ed to convert manufacturing building

4-story building to be converted to 2 dwellings. Four artists sought to convert a four-story industrial building into two dwelling units in an M1-2 zoning district in Carroll Gardens, Brooklyn. Located at 469 Carroll Street between Nevins and Third Avenue, the building is separated from the established residential district in Carroll Gardens by the Gowanus Canal and sits slightly west of Park Slope’s residential core. Until 2003, a manufacturer of machine components had occupied the building for several decades.

In their original application, the artists sought to convert the building and add a fifth-story penthouse. The artists claimed that a manufacturing use was not viable due to the building’s narrow wooden staircase, limited freight elevator and deficient storage capacity.

At the hearing, supporters testified that the applicants would be assets to the community because they were successful artists. Aleksandar Duravcevic is a print artist who has sold several pieces to the Metropolitan Museum of Art and Ben Schrank is a novelist who also writes for Vogue and The Financial Times.

At the hearing, Chair Meenakshi Srinivasan stated that the application failed to address whether ground floor retail was feasible. In response, the applicants submitted a survey of established retail, the level of foot traffic and the amount of residential uses on the block. The survey found one vacant retail space, low foot traffic and residential use in 25 out of 36 lots along Carroll Street.

BSA approved after the artists abandoned the proposal to add a fifth story.

BSA: 459 Carroll Street (147-04-BZ) (January 25, 2005) (Jeffrey Chester, Sullivan, Chester & Gardner, P.C., for Schrank, Duravcevic and Driscoll). CITYADMIN

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