City peddles $1 lots in Brooklyn

The city’s Department of Housing Preservation and Development is looking for a developer to build up to 225 affordable housing units and 68,000 square feet of retail space along a vacant strip on Livonia Avenue, between Pennsylvania and Williams avenues in the East New York area of Brooklyn, Crain’s reported, issuing a request for proposals today.

The request is the first phase in what the department has dubbed the Livonia Avenue Initiative, a plan to revamp the strip.
“This retail corridor has been defunct for a long time,” said RuthAnne Visnauskas, deputy commissioner for HPD. The site’s proximity to the elevated L train line meant there was a lot of noise, which discouraged developers in the past, but building materials can keep out noise, she said.

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The RFP is part of Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s New Housing Marketplace Plan, a $8.4 billion strategy to create or preserve 165,000 affordable apartments by the end of 2014.

“This is an exciting opportunity to transform underutilized property into a thriving thoroughfare that will be a catalyst for growth and development within the neighborhood,” HPD Commissioner Mathew Wambua said in a statement.

The lots will be transferred to the winning developer for just $1 per lot, according to HPD. [Crain’s]

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