South Williamsburg development approved

Wythe Ave. proposed plan.

Community board wanted developer to exclude bars from mixed-income housing project. On February 16, 2011, the City Planning Commission approved Bruce Terzano’s plan to redevelop the southeast corner of a block bounded by South 2nd and South 3rd Streets and Kent and Wythe Avenues in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. The proposal included constructing a six-story building with 61 market-rate apartments and ground floor commercial space, and a smaller six-story building with eighteen affordable apartments.

To facilitate the project, Terzano requested that the City establish a special mixed-use district and rezone the block’s eastern half from M3-1 to M1-4/R6A, and apply the City’s Inclusionary Housing Program to the site. Terzano’s property is occupied by a plumbing supply store and parking lot. The remainder of the rezoning area consists of mixed-use buildings, undeveloped land, and industrial buildings converted to commercial uses.

Brooklyn Community Board 1 opposed the proposal and requested that the site be rezoned to a more restrictive R6B district and that Terzano agree not to site a bar or restaurant on the ground floor. Borough President Marty Markowitz conditioned his approval on Terzano filing a restrictive declaration guaranteeing that the affordable housing would be built.

Image: Courtesy of NYC Department of City Planning

During the Commission’s review, neighbors testifying in opposition said the City should conduct a comprehensive zoning study of the area rather than permit the spot rezoning, and argued that Terzano should have instead sought a BSA variance to build the project. 8 CityLand 6 (Feb. 15, 2011).

The Commission approved the plan, noting that the residential and commercial uses permitted under the rezoning would be similar to existing uses in the surrounding area. The Commission also noted that the recent 2005 Greenpoint-Williamsburg Rezoning plan and the private rezoning of the nearby Domino Sugar plant changed the area’s manufacturing districts to mixed-use districts in response to the decline in manufacturing activity and an increase in residential uses in the neighborhood. The Commission pointed out that the special mixed-use district would continue to permit light manufacturing uses should the block’s property owners decide to redevelop their sites.

ULURP Process
Lead Agency: CPC, Neg. Dec.
Comm. Bd.: BK 1, Den’d, 15-4-4
Boro. Pres.: App’d
CPC: App’d, 12-0-0
Council: Pending

CPC: Wythe Avenue Rezoning (Feb. 16, 2011) (Architect: Joseph Vance Architects).