The Real Deal New York

EDC floats plan for 1.1M sf development at MTA bus depot in East Harlem

Project would include 730 apartments, including 50% affordable units

September 01, 2016 11:45AM

Maria Torres-Springer and 2460 Second Avenue in Harlem

Maria Torres-Springer and 2460 Second Avenue in Harlem

If the city’s Economic Development Corp. has its way, a full-block East Harlem site that houses a former slave burial ground — and most recently was used as an MTA bus depot — could become a massive mixed-use complex with hundreds of affordable housing units.

Plans for a 1.1 million-square-foot project at the city-owned site at 2460 Second Avenue were disclosed in The City Record last week, according to the Commercial Observer. A memorial and cultural center commemorating the burial ground and its descendants would be a “centerpiece” of the development, which will also provide housing and jobs to the community, an EDC spokesperson said in a statement.

The proposal includes a 655,215-square-foot building with 730 apartments — 50 percent of which would be affordable. The rest of the space would be used as retail and office space, with about 30,000 square feet set aside for a community facility, including 15,000 square feet for a burial ground memorial.

Plans also call for a 300-spot parking garage and 18,000 square feet of outdoor space.

The 17th century site, between 126th and 127th streets, was previously occupied by a church and slave burial ground before being developed into an amusement park, casino and film studio. It was later leased to the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, which vacated the 105,000-square-foot building in January after its lease expired.

If the EDC’s plans make it through the city’s Uniform Land Use Review Procedure (ULURP), the ultimate goal is to change the zoning and sell the site to a private developer in order to execute its vision. [CO] — E.B. Solomont