Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Brooklyn Navy Yard's New Supermarket and Industrial Center Get City Council Approval

Posted By on Wed, Nov 30, 2011 at 9:46 AM

Supermarket goes here.
  • Supermarket goes here.

It's been a long, dramatic journey for the city's redevelopment project at the southwestern-most corner of the Brooklyn Navy Yard, aka Admiral's Row, including crumbling historical buildings, a bribery scandal, and fighting between federal, state and city officials. But following yesterday's thumbs-up from the City Council the project—which will see all but two historic buildings torn down to make way for a manufacturing center and supermarket—only needs the Mayor's signature before it starts to take shape.

Yesterday afternoon the City Council gave its unanimous approval to the redevelopment of the only remaining parcel of federally-owned land in the Navy Yard—Admiral's Row along Flushing Avenue and Navy Street—which the city has been in negotiations to acquire since 1987. Crain's reports that following this vote, the Brooklyn Navy Yard Development Corp. should be able to send out a request for proposals from potential developers of the site as early as next month.

That is, of course, assuming the federal government finally transfers ownership of the land currently occupied by dilapidated former officers' homes and the leaning Timber Shed to the city. If that happens, the first priority will likely be to secure the two structures slated for preservation: the Timber Shed and Building B.

According to the original redevelopment plans, both those buildings were to be restored and stand alongside new manufacturing and retail structures. But with a new, as-yet unknown developer at the helm, and a supermarket tenant that may or may not still be ShopRite, it's hard to know what the future of Admiral's Row will look like.

Still, everyone's optimistic:

The Brooklyn Navy Yard Development Corp. is confident that the city will take possession of the site from the owner, the federal government, in the coming weeks, and expects to issue a request for proposals next month seeking a developer to take on the project.

Likewise, City Councilmember Letitia James expressed optimism in a statement accompanying the vote:
The City Council’s approval of the public review process for the redevelopment of Admiral’s Row is great news. [...] The project will incorporate historic preservation into a progressive sustainable site plan, which will in turn become a huge boost for the local economy.

But if the land transfer doesn't go through before the weather gets seriously wintry, the amount of historic preservation happening on Admiral's Row could be significantly reduced.

(Photo: NYPL)

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