Building starts to rise at site of former Italianate villa in Clinton Hill

At left, the rendering posted on the construction fence. At right, the original house in 2017.
Photo by Craig Hubert/Photo by Susan De Vries

After many twists and turns, something is finally rising on the former site of a pre-Civil War home in Clinton Hill.

Located just outside the Clinton Hill Historic District at 532 Clinton Ave., the property sold for $6.5 million to 532 Clinton LLC in December 2019, shortly after the home was demolished. The sale came with plans for a 14-unit, seven-story residential building in its place.

A recent visit to the site showed that three floors of an eventual seven stories have been constructed.

Plans issued in June 2020 call for underground parking for five cars, a gym, two apartments per floor and a rooftop recreation area. The most recent rendering, found on the site’s construction fence last year, shows a largely symmetrical modern building with large, multi-pane windows, interest at the street level and an entrance area highlighted in a light color. Shading appears to show most units will have glass-enclosed balconies. Roslyn-based engineering firm Shahriar Afshari is the applicant of record.

The sales history over the property is tangled. In December of 2016, the heirs of longtime owner James N. Warren sold the house to an LLC for $525,000, according to public records. The LLC is associated with Yuval Golan of Bapaz Aderet Properties Corp., who also appears to be involved with the recently landmarked abolitionist house at 227 Duffield St. in Downtown Brooklyn, and who has a history of unusually low sale prices to longtime owners in Brooklyn.

The site.Photo by Craig Hubert

The property sold again, this time for $6.5 million to 532 Clinton LLC, in December 2019. The address of the LLC, which leads to a box at the Bay Ridge Mail Station located at 9728 Third Ave., appears to be shared with a company called EM Development, which has worked on small development projects in Kensington, Bath Beach and Carroll Gardens.

Construction began on the Clinton Avenue site in the summer of 2020, which had sat empty since late in 2019. It was formerly home to an 1850s freestanding Italianate villa with some Gothic Revival touches and round-arched windows. It was in the hands of a family named Warren going back at least three generations to 1982, city records show.

The house circa 1983-1988.Photo via Municipal Archives

On the same block as the former Italianate villa, a giant Morris Adjmi-designed development is currently under construction and already towers over the property, replacing a large section at the corner of Clinton Avenue and Atlantic, including once-famous drink spot Hot Bird, which was demolished in September 2019.

This story first appeared on Brownstoner.com.