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BP Adams Rejects Rezoning of 80 Flatbush Site, Demands Height Reduction

Adams calls for changes to the 80 Flatbush proposal including a 600-feet cap of the building, the consideration of new public school sites and the creation of a nearby subway entrance.
Renderings courtesy Alloy

Adams calls for changes to the 80 Flatbush proposal including a 600-feet cap of the building, the consideration of new public school sites and the creation of a nearby subway entrance.

The highly contested Flatbush 80 proposal was rejected by Community Board 2.
Renderings courtesy Alloy

On Friday, Brooklyn Borough President Eric L. Adams issued his recommendations on the controversial 80 Flatbush project in Downtown Brooklyn.

Alloy, the developer behind the 80 Flatbush proposal, plans to build a sprawling development to add 900 apartments—including 200 affordable units, a cultural space and two schools. The development would stretch across five buildings, including a 986 feet tower which would become Brooklyn's tallest construction. Alloy is requesting the rezoning of the project site to allow the development to rise much higher than the current zoning allows -- a plan that has been met with great opposition from the local community and its elected officials.

In his response, Adams also "disapproved with conditions" of the rezoning of the site, located at Flatbush Avenue, State Street, Third Avenue and Schermerhorn Street. The borough president called for a height reduction of the proposed building, quality-of-life measures for residents of State Street, the creation of a new subway entrance for the Atlantic Avenue/Barclays Center station, the consideration of new sites for Khalil Gibran International Academy and a planned elementary school, and the completion of Willoughby Square.

BP Eric Adams
Photo courtesy Office of Brooklyn Borough President Eric L. Adams

"My goal is to realize the perfect combination of addressing the need to create affordable housing — the most critical issue facing Brooklyn — while simultaneously taking into consideration the history of the neighborhood," said Adams. "The voices of Boerum Hill, Downtown Brooklyn and adjoining communities are reflected in these recommendations, which I hope will be thoughtfully considered as this ULURP application moves through the process."

In his advisory, Adams called for a restriction of the proposed maximum height for the skyscraper, recommending a 600-feet cap that would be contextual with the adjacent Hub building, a 610-foot-tall tower. With respect to the residents' quality of life on the 500 block of State Street, who would be most impacted by the project, the borough president asked that the Flatbush Avenue tower's loading dock be located to Schermerhorn Street.

Regarding the new proposed elementary school, Adams suggested that it should be moved to the Third Avenue side of the development and called on the New York City Department of Education (DOE) to commit funding to the school. To address the overcrowding of schools within Community School District 15, he called on the DOE and the New York City School Construction Authority (SCA) to collaborate with the Brooklyn Community Board 6 and local elected officials in engaging the local community's consideration "for the siting of public schools as part of NYCHA's Wyckoff Gardens sites and the pending NYU Langone-Cobble Hill emergency room development site."

With regards to the project's affordable housing units, Adams asked to give preference to families with children, low-income seniors and formerly homeless tenants, as well as residents from NYCHA's Gowanus Houses and Wyckoff Gardens in the development's upcoming affordable housing lottery. 

Adams's response follows months of dialogue with local stakeholders and community activists, including a public hearing that he hosted in April. Earlier last month, the project received a serious blow when the Community Board 2 rejected the proposal during its board meeting and voted against Alloy Development's request for a rezoning for the site.

For the project to proceed, it will need the approval from the City Planning Commission, the City Council and the mayor.