Another high-rise to go up on the Southside of Williamsburg

Another high-rise to go up on the Southside of Williamsburg
Community Newspaper Group / Aaron Short

A 15-story building will rise on a vacant waterfront lot on the edge of Broadway and Kent Avenue, adding another residential tower to Williamsburg’s fast-developing south side — though this one is mostly comprised of affordable units.

The developer of the site, L+M development partners and Goldman Sachs, secured financing for the $70-million project earlier this month, after plans to build a 200-room luxury hotel on the site sputtered for three years.

The new plan, according to a report in Crain’s New York, will comprise 160 units, 80 percent of which will be offered at below-market-rate prices.

Lisa Gomez, executive vice president at L+M Partners, which co-developed the Schaefer Landing building on Kent Avenue, called its decision to provide four-fifths of the building’s units to low- and middle-income households an “upside-down 80-20” that neighborhood residents would heartily embrace.

“We believe there was a need and we also didn’t want to be competing with luxury product, which there is a fair amount of in the marketplace right now and we felt it was the way to mitigate risk for our investors and lenders,”’ said Gomez.

There will also be ground-floor retail and commercial space, and underground parking.

Construction will begin this month and the project should be completed by 2012.

The residential tower is the latest significant waterfront property in Williamsburg to come online in the past year, joining the redevelopment of the old Domino Sugar plant and the Rose Plaza on the River project — bringing a total of 3,034 new units to Kent Avenue, in addition to several smaller projects currently in development.

The residential building will likely have stunning views of the Williamsburg Bridge and the lower Manhattan skyline, which Community Board 1 member Ward Dennis called “very interesting,” adding on his blog Brooklyn11211 that it will “set a new standard of affordable housing in the neighborhood.”

“On Broadway, adjacent to the bridge and fronting the water across Kent, I’d argue that it is more appropriate than the 17-story block Domino will put just off Wythe Avenue,” wrote Dennis. “The latter high-rise sits adjacent to a neighborhood of three-story row houses, and will form the backdrop for a row of three-story houses on Wythe Avenue. Height has its place, just not every place.”