The Landmarks Preservation Commission plans to slap owners of the new Gowanus Whole Foods with a second fine for neglecting a dilapidated historic building next door.
The multinational organic grocery chain, which opened up their first Brooklyn location at 529 Third Avenue and 13th Street in January, is responsible for fixing the decrepit facade of the Coignet building next door per an agreement with the city that allowed construction on the lot around it.
Although Whole Foods claims it began restoration earlier this week, preservationists are skeptical, the Brooklyn Paper reported.
Whole Foods was fined $3,000 back in December for the same violation, but the charge was dropped because the city didn’t have all the necessary paperwork in court, according to past reports.
Restoration is expected to be done in the fall or winter of this year, but its not clear how long it will be until the store is “actually in the midst of the project,” a spokesperson told the Brooklyn Paper.
Since Whole Foods arrived on the scene, residential rents in the historically industrial neighborhood have surged from $6 per square foot in 1999 to more than $20 per foot for apartments and $35 per foot for retail spaces. [BrooklynPaper] – Angela Hunt