The Real Deal New York

City Council to approve Two Trees’ BAM South project

June 17, 2013 02:00PM

UPDATED 6:13 p.m., June 17: The City Council is poised to green light the BAM South development today, WNYC reported. The mixed-use project, developed by Two Trees Management, will feature a 50,000-square-foot cultural center, a 20,000-square-foot Public Plaza and 300 units of housing.

“Two Trees is grateful to the City Council for its support and proud to partner with the city and some of Brooklyn’s most innovative cultural institutions to advance the growth of downtown Brooklyn’s world-class cultural district,” Jed Walentas, a principal at Two Trees, said in a statement.

In order to pass the proposal, Councilmember Letitia James reached an agreement to move the nearby Pacific Street library to the BAM South building and preserve the library’s own original structure.

Previously, James had threatened to veto the project unless construction workers received a prevailing wage, as previously reported. James also indicated that the number of affordable housing units — currently at 60 — may not be sufficient and raised concerns that the Pacific Street library would be razed to make way for apartments.

In turn, Jane Walentas, the wife of Two Trees founder David Walentas, last week revoked her support for James’ campaign for city Public Advocate, as previously reported. [WNYC]Zachary Kussin

  • WB

    So Ms. James doesn’t think there is enough affordable housing on this site and wants more. However, she wants to preserve the too to be vacant library building instead of it becoming more apartments? By doing so she eliminates the opportunity to build 60 or so units there, of which 12 would be affordable. How is this logical?

  • Carolyn McIntyre

    Citizens Defending Libraries wants to see the Pacific Branch saved as a historic building and to continue as a library.  It is our understanding Council Member Tish James has gotten a commitment from the administration to ensure Pacific stays open which we hope will be honored.  So long as that happens we were not, per se, opposed to a new library in the BAM South building although we looked with disfavor upon the manipulations that turned that project, whch started with an RFP for a “parking garage,” into a very different, much larger project delivering too little public benefit.
    We consider that no matter what happened yesterday we have an important fight ahead of us to save the Pacific Branch Library for the Girl Scout Troop and the many community groups who use it. That’s why Citizens Defending Libraries has a petition with over 11,000 signatures, most of them on line opposing sales of libraries like the Pacific Branch, Brooklyn Heights, Mid-Manhattan, SIBIL, Donnell.