With Rezoning Passed, What’s Next For Dock Street Dumbo?

 

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As you know, the decision by City Council to approve the rezoning of the Dock Street Dumbo development project filed by Two Trees Management concludes this process, but for Two Trees Management, there’s a lot of work to be done. Now that this two year process has concluded, the process for the demolition, design and build out of the apartments, school, and retail will begin.

The New York Times posted an article that since the rezoning has been approved, St. Ann’s Warehouse will need a new home now that its 14,000 square foot space in Dumbo is scheduled to be turned into the Dock St Dumbo development. St. Ann’s produces great programming and work, so it’s unfortunate that they will have to move out, but artistic director Susan Feldman said that the developers are committed to helping St. Ann’s find a new space. St. Ann’s has always known that the space was temporary, so this was expected. According to the NY Times article, “it moved to the current warehouse space (a former spice milling factory) in 2001, and was initially supposed to stay there for only nine months.”

After yesterday’s, City Council decision, we wanted to know what the next steps are, so we asked Jed Walentas:

Q) Now that the rezoning has been approved for Dock Street, what are your next steps?
A) There is a fairly lengthy design process we need to go through that we will start over the next few months. That will take at least a year. We also have to formalize a contract with the SCA. There is a requirement for there to be a public school.

Q) How long until the proposed development begins work on the site and when do you anticipate the completion of the building?
A) In the best case scenario, work will begin there in a year. That is somewhat credit and economy dependent. It will probably take 2 years to build – start to finish. [Ed note: The start the construction process will be around mid-year 2010 and complete work in 2012 based on these ideal timelines.]

Q) Is there anything you’d like to convey to the people opposed to the Dock Street Dumbo plans?
A) I hope we build a building that everyone is proud of and makes use of becomes an important and cherished part of the community. I hope everyone can work together to create the best public middle school in the city.

{Past Dock Street News}

58 Comment

  • Just disgusting. Once again a wealthy developer has bought and paid for politicians to thwart the will of the public.

  • Just disgusting. Once again a wealthy developer has bought and paid for politicians to thwart the will of the public.

  • I hope they are more detailed oriented when it comes to the plans for the building given that the aerial view rendering has the Beacon Tower and JCondo buildings mixed up.

  • I hope they are more detailed oriented when it comes to the plans for the building given that the aerial view rendering has the Beacon Tower and JCondo buildings mixed up.

  • “In the best case scenario, work will begin there in a year. That is somewhat credit and economy dependent.”

    And the backtracking begins. What happened to the creation of minority jobs and helping people in the economic downturn? What about Jeb’s comment that TT has a ton of money to begin the project?

    Great job, team Carlo, in supporting this hideous project.

  • “In the best case scenario, work will begin there in a year. That is somewhat credit and economy dependent.”

    And the backtracking begins. What happened to the creation of minority jobs and helping people in the economic downturn? What about Jeb’s comment that TT has a ton of money to begin the project?

    Great job, team Carlo, in supporting this hideous project.

  • Yes… and Dock Street supporters thought this would fast track a school…

  • Yes… and Dock Street supporters thought this would fast track a school…

  • Anyone know who needs to be greased to get one of the “affordable apartments”?

    Is Tish James going to be dolling those out?

  • Anyone know who needs to be greased to get one of the “affordable apartments”?

    Is Tish James going to be dolling those out?

  • Dave,

    I take it patience isn’t one of your virtues. Rome wasn’t and Dock Street won’t be built in a day.

    Come on Publius now, smile on your brother. Everybody get together, try to love one another right now! (Sorry – I couldn’t resist.)

    Seriously, let’s work together and improve the community.

    Sincerely.

  • Dave,

    I take it patience isn’t one of your virtues. Rome wasn’t and Dock Street won’t be built in a day.

    Come on Publius now, smile on your brother. Everybody get together, try to love one another right now! (Sorry – I couldn’t resist.)

    Seriously, let’s work together and improve the community.

    Sincerely.

  • Carlo,

    Nice words….we tried to improve the community, but a greedy developer won the day. This building will be a blight on the community, not an improvement.

    The fight is not over. The developer is already setting up the ‘out’ from his promises. ‘Economic considerations’ will be his excuse to not build a school or give affordable housing.

  • Carlo,

    Nice words….we tried to improve the community, but a greedy developer won the day. This building will be a blight on the community, not an improvement.

    The fight is not over. The developer is already setting up the ‘out’ from his promises. ‘Economic considerations’ will be his excuse to not build a school or give affordable housing.

  • Q) Now that the rezoning has been approved for Dock Street, what are your next steps?
    A) There is a fairly lengthy design process we need to go through that we will start over the next few months. That will take at least a year. We also have to formalize a contract with the SCA. There is a requirement for there to be a public school.

    Start over the design process? I thought this was the design, now it will have to get a ‘start over’?Sounds like double talk to me. Push through one design and build another.

  • Q) Now that the rezoning has been approved for Dock Street, what are your next steps?
    A) There is a fairly lengthy design process we need to go through that we will start over the next few months. That will take at least a year. We also have to formalize a contract with the SCA. There is a requirement for there to be a public school.

    Start over the design process? I thought this was the design, now it will have to get a ‘start over’?Sounds like double talk to me. Push through one design and build another.

  • Well, they better be designing it as a smaller building… but you can bet on the opposite.

    18 floors within 100 feet of the Brooklyn Bridge… what else is there to say??? That should be enough. What is the matter with people? Is everyone smoking crack ??

    Again and again and again communities complain developments are out of scale with the site… and you know what? THEY ARE. To just ignore these universal concerns is to not face the fact that there is a systemic problem at hand.

    Developers are willing to do anything: include affordable housing, a school, certify the building as green but address height and density. Simply ignoring this common concern will not make it go away.

    We are told that it is not economically viable to build smaller, which is probably untrue… but if it is THE ECONOMICS NEED TO CHANGE. This is NOT working.

    This building is not contextual. It is a rental racket… a giant middle finger to the community design to be as wall-like as possible.

  • Well, they better be designing it as a smaller building… but you can bet on the opposite.

    18 floors within 100 feet of the Brooklyn Bridge… what else is there to say??? That should be enough. What is the matter with people? Is everyone smoking crack ??

    Again and again and again communities complain developments are out of scale with the site… and you know what? THEY ARE. To just ignore these universal concerns is to not face the fact that there is a systemic problem at hand.

    Developers are willing to do anything: include affordable housing, a school, certify the building as green but address height and density. Simply ignoring this common concern will not make it go away.

    We are told that it is not economically viable to build smaller, which is probably untrue… but if it is THE ECONOMICS NEED TO CHANGE. This is NOT working.

    This building is not contextual. It is a rental racket… a giant middle finger to the community design to be as wall-like as possible.

  • incredible … the same people posting the same negative info again and again. don’t you guys have jobs or something constructive to do? so bitter and so so misinformed … get over it.

  • incredible … the same people posting the same negative info again and again. don’t you guys have jobs or something constructive to do? so bitter and so so misinformed … get over it.

  • xmarks, can you clarify a little… how *exactly* am I misinformed ?

    Are out of scale developments not a consistent issue in Brooklyn?
    Do you think there is no systemic problem here? (ie: these common complaints are always “misinformed”)

    I am actually trying to be constructive and suggest how to prevent things like this in the future — although I AM obviously upset about this one.

  • xmarks, can you clarify a little… how *exactly* am I misinformed ?

    Are out of scale developments not a consistent issue in Brooklyn?
    Do you think there is no systemic problem here? (ie: these common complaints are always “misinformed”)

    I am actually trying to be constructive and suggest how to prevent things like this in the future — although I AM obviously upset about this one.

  • @dumbostreets you’re misinformed as to what it takes to develop a property. you have no clue as to the process, timelines, costs and you oversimplify the argument. two trees is a business not a charity. of course they are in it to make money. TT have also done very positive things in the neighborhood. what has the DNA done to improve the neighborhood lately?

  • @dumbostreets you’re misinformed as to what it takes to develop a property. you have no clue as to the process, timelines, costs and you oversimplify the argument. two trees is a business not a charity. of course they are in it to make money. TT have also done very positive things in the neighborhood. what has the DNA done to improve the neighborhood lately?

  • Well, for starters DNA tried to stop this thing. That’s a plus in my book.

    xmarks, you are incredibly naive in criticizing neighborhood associations, volunteer organizations, for not doing more when they are not a business with millions of dollars in the bank. The comparison you are making is absurd. The DNA is doing the best that is can given what it has to work with.

    Secondly, your tone is incredibly patronizing. I thought the opponents of this project were the rude ones?

    I don’t need to be a developer to know when something isn’t working. You really think that all these complaints around Brooklyn concerning out of scale development is simply “clueless” ? Very arrogant indeed.

  • Well, for starters DNA tried to stop this thing. That’s a plus in my book.

    xmarks, you are incredibly naive in criticizing neighborhood associations, volunteer organizations, for not doing more when they are not a business with millions of dollars in the bank. The comparison you are making is absurd. The DNA is doing the best that is can given what it has to work with.

    Secondly, your tone is incredibly patronizing. I thought the opponents of this project were the rude ones?

    I don’t need to be a developer to know when something isn’t working. You really think that all these complaints around Brooklyn concerning out of scale development is simply “clueless” ? Very arrogant indeed.

  • According the BHB “Katz … made public a rider to the Walentases’ application that will require a public school in the project and for no fewer than 20 percent of the residential units be affordable.”

    Does anyone know where to read the actual rider?

    The Brooklyn Eagle says, “Land Use Chair Katz made public a recommended rider to the Two Trees application.”

    RECOMMENDED?!?
    So, this thing isn’t signed either? Just a suggestion? Good job councilmembers… way to go.

    Until I can read the actual thing, the obvious loophole to me is to scrap the “project” and start a new one which can more fully take advantage of the new zoning variance.

    So, is the zoning variance contingent on the inclusion of the school/affordable housing? Or just the approval of the project?

    Get it? I’m sure you-know-who has already thought of this.

  • According the BHB “Katz … made public a rider to the Walentases’ application that will require a public school in the project and for no fewer than 20 percent of the residential units be affordable.”

    Does anyone know where to read the actual rider?

    The Brooklyn Eagle says, “Land Use Chair Katz made public a recommended rider to the Two Trees application.”

    RECOMMENDED?!?
    So, this thing isn’t signed either? Just a suggestion? Good job councilmembers… way to go.

    Until I can read the actual thing, the obvious loophole to me is to scrap the “project” and start a new one which can more fully take advantage of the new zoning variance.

    So, is the zoning variance contingent on the inclusion of the school/affordable housing? Or just the approval of the project?

    Get it? I’m sure you-know-who has already thought of this.

  • To borrow an idea from Bill Maher….
    The problem in this country is that we have become sick for profits. We have to grow every year, get bigger and bigger, making more and more money. There is no such thing as a reasonable profit, people will do anything for money. This is perfectly exampled by the Walentas’. They have made an absolute killing over the years. Just look at 1 Main, they bought that for $1.5m and on the Penthouse alone they will probably sell it for $12-15m or higher. David owns a $90m estate in the Hamptons, etc. etc. They made a ton of money on DUMBO and now they are turning their backs on the neighborhood and all the people who bought their condos by building a wall between them and the Bridge. You can complain about NIMBYism and protecting views all you want but do they have to put such a huge building there, could they not still make a “reasonable return” on a smaller project, should they not sell out the community who has purchased and made a home in DUMBO for renters who may leave after one year?? Corporations are about making a profit and even maximizing a profit but not at the expense of communities, national landmarks, and historic preservation. Business’ need more social responsibility. If they had it we probably would not be in the mess we are in right now.

  • To borrow an idea from Bill Maher….
    The problem in this country is that we have become sick for profits. We have to grow every year, get bigger and bigger, making more and more money. There is no such thing as a reasonable profit, people will do anything for money. This is perfectly exampled by the Walentas’. They have made an absolute killing over the years. Just look at 1 Main, they bought that for $1.5m and on the Penthouse alone they will probably sell it for $12-15m or higher. David owns a $90m estate in the Hamptons, etc. etc. They made a ton of money on DUMBO and now they are turning their backs on the neighborhood and all the people who bought their condos by building a wall between them and the Bridge. You can complain about NIMBYism and protecting views all you want but do they have to put such a huge building there, could they not still make a “reasonable return” on a smaller project, should they not sell out the community who has purchased and made a home in DUMBO for renters who may leave after one year?? Corporations are about making a profit and even maximizing a profit but not at the expense of communities, national landmarks, and historic preservation. Business’ need more social responsibility. If they had it we probably would not be in the mess we are in right now.

  • I noticed walking over the bridge this morning that even the empire warehouse decline in height as they approach the bridge from 4 to 3 stories!!!

  • I noticed walking over the bridge this morning that even the empire warehouse decline in height as they approach the bridge from 4 to 3 stories!!!

  • dumbostreets,

    Well at least one time people appreciated the Brooklyn Bridge, unlike the rubber-stamp agency known as the NYC ‘Council’, like term limits, these ‘representatives’ have shown they are not qualified for the office the represent. TIME TO VOTE THEM OUT.

  • dumbostreets,

    Well at least one time people appreciated the Brooklyn Bridge, unlike the rubber-stamp agency known as the NYC ‘Council’, like term limits, these ‘representatives’ have shown they are not qualified for the office the represent. TIME TO VOTE THEM OUT.

  • Check out the illustration at the top of this post. The oldest buildings, the warehouses slope gracefully down as they approach the bridge. Looks like 4 stories, 3, and then 2 stories. It so obvious what the precedent is. Has the bridge become LESS historic with time somehow??

    It is not a mere issue of views either. It’s aesthetic. It is just poor design to crowd the bridge… and poor design is a sort of crime in and of itself; but when in proximity of the bridge it is even worse.

  • Check out the illustration at the top of this post. The oldest buildings, the warehouses slope gracefully down as they approach the bridge. Looks like 4 stories, 3, and then 2 stories. It so obvious what the precedent is. Has the bridge become LESS historic with time somehow??

    It is not a mere issue of views either. It’s aesthetic. It is just poor design to crowd the bridge… and poor design is a sort of crime in and of itself; but when in proximity of the bridge it is even worse.

  • The tobacco warehouse was 5 stories at one point but was “trimmed” when the bridge was built (it was originally square until New Dock St and the dock next to the eastern pier was built).

    Now that this has been “approved” by the City, I assume affected residents of 30 Main and 70 Washington are filing challenges to their property taxes, since the project will clearly reduce the value of their properties.

  • The tobacco warehouse was 5 stories at one point but was “trimmed” when the bridge was built (it was originally square until New Dock St and the dock next to the eastern pier was built).

    Now that this has been “approved” by the City, I assume affected residents of 30 Main and 70 Washington are filing challenges to their property taxes, since the project will clearly reduce the value of their properties.

  • epc, your argument that it is only the people of 30 and 70 main will be affected is two trees propaganda, this thing will be a blight for all. But having said that, I hope their challenges bankrupt the project.

  • epc, your argument that it is only the people of 30 and 70 main will be affected is two trees propaganda, this thing will be a blight for all. But having said that, I hope their challenges bankrupt the project.

  • Interesting that 5 stories was considered too high by the designers of the bridge, if that’s what you (epc) are saying.

  • Interesting that 5 stories was considered too high by the designers of the bridge, if that’s what you (epc) are saying.

  • I don’t have any specific info on why the TW was trimmed of a couple of stories. I have a copy of McCullogh’s book floating around and will see if it mentions anything about the construction effects on surrounding buildings.

    As far as 30 Main / 70 Washington, my point is that residents there now have direct actionable action by the city which affects their property values immediately. Not that they’re the only ones affected by the potential construction.

  • I don’t have any specific info on why the TW was trimmed of a couple of stories. I have a copy of McCullogh’s book floating around and will see if it mentions anything about the construction effects on surrounding buildings.

    As far as 30 Main / 70 Washington, my point is that residents there now have direct actionable action by the city which affects their property values immediately. Not that they’re the only ones affected by the potential construction.

  • “direct actionable action” – you’re killing me.

    any ‘damages’ are about as indirect as it gets. and what’s your “action”? something real.

  • “direct actionable action” – you’re killing me.

    any ‘damages’ are about as indirect as it gets. and what’s your “action”? something real.

  • Concerning your link… the author said he “confirmed” this accusation, but he doesn’t really explain how and who. I’d take that post with a grain of salt… but if it is true, then it is very bad of course. I’m skeptical that Yassky, who is leaving his seat, would bother with a deal like that.

  • Concerning your link… the author said he “confirmed” this accusation, but he doesn’t really explain how and who. I’d take that post with a grain of salt… but if it is true, then it is very bad of course. I’m skeptical that Yassky, who is leaving his seat, would bother with a deal like that.

  • You have to take anything the Queens Crap blog says with a huge amount of skepticism. I’ve battled with them over other issues, and, frankly, they represent the Archie Bunker faction of Queens.

    Read their blog a bit to get a sense of what they’ve all about.

  • You have to take anything the Queens Crap blog says with a huge amount of skepticism. I’ve battled with them over other issues, and, frankly, they represent the Archie Bunker faction of Queens.

    Read their blog a bit to get a sense of what they’ve all about.

  • This is just so sad. This will change the neighborhood–for the worst. I think a lot of current residents will leave. A building of that scale, especially with a school, will change the landscape completey. I don’t trust for a second that Walentas wants to improve the community. He’s a greedy developer who sees an opportunity and goes after it. Shame. I can’t imagine who would want to live in this building– it feels tainted. I’m kicking myself for not getting involved more with the opposition. I honestly never thought this monster would get approved. I hope there’s still a chance to stop this. Can you imagine a school down there, school buses? It will be chaos. They will likely have to pave over the streets. As much as I love the idea of a wonderful school, it does not belong in that area. But the reality is, I don’t even believe it will ultimately happen. This was just part of the pitch. I actually met a wonderful man named Ken Diamondstone on the York F platform the other day. He’s running for city council and vehemently opposed dock street. We should support him. Perhaps he could do something if he gets elected.

  • This is just so sad. This will change the neighborhood–for the worst. I think a lot of current residents will leave. A building of that scale, especially with a school, will change the landscape completey. I don’t trust for a second that Walentas wants to improve the community. He’s a greedy developer who sees an opportunity and goes after it. Shame. I can’t imagine who would want to live in this building– it feels tainted. I’m kicking myself for not getting involved more with the opposition. I honestly never thought this monster would get approved. I hope there’s still a chance to stop this. Can you imagine a school down there, school buses? It will be chaos. They will likely have to pave over the streets. As much as I love the idea of a wonderful school, it does not belong in that area. But the reality is, I don’t even believe it will ultimately happen. This was just part of the pitch. I actually met a wonderful man named Ken Diamondstone on the York F platform the other day. He’s running for city council and vehemently opposed dock street. We should support him. Perhaps he could do something if he gets elected.

  • Newgirl, with all due respect…Is Walentas the problem? Well, yes he started it. However, the bigger problem is people like you who are “kicking myself for not getting involved more” and who are naive enough to think that some newly elected council member will magically show up on the scene and do something “if he gets elected.” Many of us have been involved in fighting this for quite a while and watched you and your friends stroll by the protests against this building, tried to get you to email council members, tried to get you off your a$$ to prevent what you now wish hadn’t happened. Oh sure, you wanted everyone else to “give ‘em hell”. And then you went home. You ask “Can you imagine a school down there, school buses?” Why yes NewGirl, we can. Can you imagine where we would be if EVERYONE in this neighborhood like you had stood up and been counted? Don’t show up now with your “poor us” comments.

  • Newgirl, with all due respect…Is Walentas the problem? Well, yes he started it. However, the bigger problem is people like you who are “kicking myself for not getting involved more” and who are naive enough to think that some newly elected council member will magically show up on the scene and do something “if he gets elected.” Many of us have been involved in fighting this for quite a while and watched you and your friends stroll by the protests against this building, tried to get you to email council members, tried to get you off your a$$ to prevent what you now wish hadn’t happened. Oh sure, you wanted everyone else to “give ‘em hell”. And then you went home. You ask “Can you imagine a school down there, school buses?” Why yes NewGirl, we can. Can you imagine where we would be if EVERYONE in this neighborhood like you had stood up and been counted? Don’t show up now with your “poor us” comments.

  • @epc The Tobacco Warehouse was indeed trimmed (sliced) when New Dock Street was laid out, but this occurred circa 1913, not when the Bridge was built. Additionally, it was reduced from 5 stories to 2 by 1945.

  • @epc The Tobacco Warehouse was indeed trimmed (sliced) when New Dock Street was laid out, but this occurred circa 1913, not when the Bridge was built. Additionally, it was reduced from 5 stories to 2 by 1945.