The City Planning Commission voted 11-1 on Monday in favor of repurposing the Bedford-Union Armory into a mixed-use project featuring housing and a recreation center, despite protests and fears about gentrification from the community, according to DNAinfo.
Several people showed up to the CPC hearing to protest the project, and at least two of them were arrested: Crown Heights Tenant Union founding member Joel Feingold and Green Party City Council candidate Jabari Brisport.
The local community board, Brooklyn borough president and local Council member all oppose the plan in its current state, largely due to worries that it will lead to higher rents and more tenant displacement in Crown Heights. However, when the city conducted its environmental review of the project, it concluded that it would not significantly impact rents, displacement or the character of Crown Heights.
Michelle de La Uz was the only CPC member to vote against the plan over concerns that it will not have enough affordable units. As of now, 115 of the plan’s 330 rentals would be subsidized, and 12 of its 60 condominiums would be sold at below-market rates. Elected officials have encouraged the city to instead make 100 percent of the units affordable.
CPC Chair Marisa Lago, who voted in favor of the armory, maintained that it would benefit the community, according to DNAinfo.
“We are pleased that this proposal is leveraging one of our city’s scarce resources, public land, to deliver 390 new homes,” she said. [DNAinfo] – Eddie Small