To Sponge Up Gowanus Muck
A boat standing on its stern serves as a welcoming sign to the Sponge Park test site. Photo by Trudy Whitman.
By Trudy Whitman
Gowanus Canal pollution. It’s not only about the decades and decades of industrial toxins that poured directly into the waterway. As anyone who lives near the notorious channel can attest, human waste also fouls the canal after heavy precipitation. And what can’t be seen are the ground-level contaminants, such as heavy metals, that flow down the streets into the canal during downpours and heavy snow melt. When sewer mechanisms cannot handle the additional flow, this gunk goes straight into the canal as well.
50 Orange St., Brooklyn Heights. Image courtesy of Massey Knakal Realty Services.
Compiled by Linda Collins
BROOKLYN HEIGHTS — A Brooklyn Heights multi-family building previously owned by the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society (also known as the Jehovah’s Witnesses) has been sold by Massey Knakal Realty Services.
The building, at 50 Orange St., on the southeast corner of Orange and Hicks streets, was sold in an all-cash transaction valued at $7.1 million, according to Robert Knakal, Massey Knakal chairman, who exclusively handled this transaction with Stephen Palmese, director of sales in Massey Knakal’s Brooklyn office.
Owned by the society for over 20 years, the five-story elevatored apartment building contains 20 residential units — including 10 studios and 10 one-bedroom units — in approximately 15,355 gross square feet, including the cellar.
“It was delivered vacant, which is rare for this size building and location,” said Knakal, who added, “This property has been maintained according to the incredibly high standards of care and attention for which the Watchtower is particularly well-known.
This rendering, released to the Eagle in October, shows the NYU-Polytechnic proposal for the former MTA headquarters building at 370 Jay St. (center). Notice that the façade of the building would be completely redesigned. Photo courtesy of New York University-Polytechnic Institute.
By Raanan Geberer
DOWNTOWN BROOKLYN — “Let’s give the city three cheers for the plans for the city’s new applied science campus on Roosevelt Island, but we’ll give it five cheers when the city decides to support NYU and Polytechnic’s proposal for an applied science campus here.”
These words, spoken by Assemblywoman Joan Milllman (D-Downtown Brooklyn/Heights) in front of the nearly vacant former MTA headquarters building at 370 Jay St., captured the mood of Wednesday’s press conference.
Sponsored by state Sen. Daniel Squadron (D-Downtown Brooklyn/Lower Manhattan) and Borough President Marty Markowitz, the rally was called to emphasize that the NYU-Polytechnic proposal, which would use the Jay Street building for classrooms and offices, is still on the table.
DUMBO — “The Brooklyn retail market has accelerated this year, trending upward in both price and velocity,” said Chris Havens of the Creative Real Estate Group.
Havens reports that in what he calls the Greater DUMBO Area — Fulton Ferry Landing, DUMBO and Vinegar Hill — there are 129 storefronts with 309,000 square feet currently utilized as retail, restaurant, office and studio space.
Spaces range from 50 square feet to 6,000 square feet, with most availability above 3,000 square feet, according to Havens’ report.
The New York Times profiles a long-term resident of Riverside Houses in Brooklyn Heights:
Old Office Building Gets New Appearance
This rendering shows what 345 Adams St. will look like once the redevelopment of the first two floors is finished. The area at right with the arched windows will house Sugar and Plumm and American BBQ and Beer Co. Rendering courtesy of Muss Development.
DOWNTOWN BROOKLYN — In the wake of the announcement earlier this year about new stores and a restaurant coming to the Brooklyn Municipal Building, two high-end eateries that are new to the city — Sugar and Plumm, and American BBQ and Beer Company — are coming to the first two floors of another city office building at 345 Adams St.
The redevelopment of the first two floors within the 1920s-era building is a project of Muss Development LLC, best known in Brooklyn as the developer of the nearby New York Marriott at the Brooklyn Bridge and the Oceana condos in Brighton Beach.
The project, like the one at the Municipal Building, is part of the city’s overall effort to create new retail options in space that once housed government offices. The Municipal Building project is being carried out by another real estate firm, United American Land.