Brownsville: home of the brave — and maybe a rezoning

Brooklyn borough prez wants city to study parts of 98th Street

Brownsville and Eric Adams
Brownsville and Eric Adams

Could Brownsville join its neighbor East New York in the rezoning club? Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams thinks it could happen.

Adams suggested that the city look into rezoning parts of Brownsville along 98th Street between East New York and Livonia Avenues and between Livonia Avenue and Van Sinderen Avenue, according to Crain’s.

The rezoning would aim to increase housing density along 1.5 miles of the neighborhood’s elevated 3 line, eventually establishing incentives for developers to construct affordable apartments close to subway stops. Adams made the recommendation as part of the approval process for Edwin’s Place, an eight-story, 125-unit affordable housing project planned for the neighborhood.

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East New York, which is located right next to Brownsville, went through a controversial rezoning process in 2016, and a recent report by The Real Deal found that, while several affordable housing projects are on their way to the neighborhood, private developers are still largely keeping their distance.

Similarly, there hasn’t been much private development in Brownsville to date. Brisa Builders, Procida Companies and a local church are seeking a rezoning to build 512 affordable units in the neighborhood.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced in March that he would invest $1.4 billion in low-income Brooklyn neighborhoods like Brownsville, and while he claims the plan will bring 7,600 jobs to the area, residents are concerned it could lead to gentrification and displacement.  [Crain’s]Eddie Small