Bedford-Union Armory residential redevelopment comes together

Bedford-Union armory
The view from Bedford Avenue.
Photo by Susan De Vries

The residential section of a controversial redevelopment of the Bedford-Union Armory in Crown Heights is starting to come together.

Two separate buildings, right next to one another, have been rising quickly. An eight-story building located at 1089 President Street, which recently had an affordable housing lottery, has topped out. Most of the facade and windows have been installed, minus the ground floor, where work was ongoing during a recent visit to the site.

There are a total of 60 units in the building, with 38 spots to park a bicycle in the cellar along with laundry and a tenant recreation space. More space for residents will be on the ground floor, along with a community facility that also has space on the third floor. The apartments start on the fourth floor and continue above.

A second building that is part of the same project has reached 13 of an eventual 15 stories. It will have a total of 355 units with an address of 1101 President Street. Marvel Architects are behind the design for both.

Rendering via Marvel Architects

The Bedford Union Armory development, which will be renamed in honor of Congress Member Major Owens, will take up an entire block and include a recreational center operated by CAMBA and open to the public. It will include a swimming pool, basketball courts, and free and low-cost after-school programs. The swimming pool is scheduled to open in early September, according to Tribeca’s Imagine Swimming, which is running the programming.

The developers are the NYCEDC and BFC Partners.

Critics argued the development, located on city-owned property, should be 100 percent affordable. Just before the final city council vote in November 2018, Crown Heights residents and the Legal Aid Society filed a lawsuit against the development on the grounds that the environmental review did not include rent regulated tenants in its displacement projections, the New York Daily News reported at the time.

Shortly before the vote, developer BFC Partners brought on community nonprofit Local Development Corporation of Crown Heights, the local arm of the NYCEDC, as a development partner.

The Bedford-Union Armory has sat in Crown Heights for over a century. Built in 1903, it had troops stationed there until 2011 when they moved to Fort Hamilton. The city has been seeking to redevelop the site since at least 2013, when it issued a call for proposals.

This story first appeared on Brownstoner.com