September 7, 2023
“Atlantic Avenue Mixed-Use Plan” Could Bring 4,000 New Homes to Area, Delivers on Decade of Community Engagement
Will Create More Vibrant Neighborhood With $23.9 Million Investment in St. Andrew’s Playground, Additional Investment in Affordable Senior Housing
Milestone Advances Mayor Adams’ “Get Stuff Built” Plan to Tackle City’s Affordable Housing Shortage, Reach “Moonshot” Goal of 500,000 New Homes in a Decade
NEW YORK – New York City Mayor Eric Adams and New York City Department of City Planning (DCP) Director and City Planning Commission Chair Dan Garodnick today took a major step forward with the Atlantic Avenue Mixed-Use Plan (AAMUP), releasing a draft zoning framework and committing to significant investments in affordable homes for seniors and St. Andrew’s Playground in Central Brooklyn. The draft framework is a critical milestone towards delivering approximately 4,000 new homes — including up to 1,550 income-restricted homes — to a roughly 13-block stretch of Atlantic Avenue and the surrounding area, where restrictive zoning regulations have prevented the creation of new homes and job opportunities.
Along with the draft zoning framework, the Adams administration is making a significant investment of $23.5 million in St. Andrew’s Playground, a popular open space and valuable community asset adjacent to Atlantic Avenue. These steps follow the New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development’s (HPD) designation last month of a minority- and women-owned business-led development team to convert a city-owned parking lot at 542 Dean Street into 154 affordable homes for low-income seniors and those who formerly experienced homelessness with a new entrance to Dean Playground. This progress also delivers on commitments in Mayor Adams’ “Get Stuff Built” plan to speed up the process of creating new housing and his “City of Yes” plan for citywide zoning changes to create new housing in all five boroughs.
“In the midst of a severe housing shortage, New York City must use every inch of space it can to create new homes and invest in communities across the city,” said Mayor Adams. “I represented this community for more than a decade as a state senator and as Brooklyn borough president, and now as mayor, and I’ve fought for these kinds of investments throughout my career. I’m proud to be the mayor advancing this neighborhood plan for Atlantic Avenue to create thousands of new homes, deliver long-overdue investments in St. Andrew’s Playground, and advance the community’s vision for a more vibrant neighborhood in Central Brooklyn.”
“This framework highlights our administration’s ‘Build Everywhere’ strategy that aims to unlock housing opportunity across New York City. The proposed zoning along the Atlantic Avenue corridor will create over 4,000 homes, including affordable homes, in an area that currently does not permit any housing,” said Deputy Mayor for Housing, Economic Development, and Workforce Maria Torres-Springer. “I want to thank Director Garodnick, the City Planning team, and the thousands of community members that have shaped this framework. I look forward to kicking off the environmental and land use approvals process next month.”
“With this zoning framework and investments in affordable housing, open space, and more, we are delivering the improvements that our neighbors who participated in the Atlantic Avenue Mixed-Use Plan engagement process have been asking for,” said DCP Director Garodnick. “For too long, outdated zoning has restricted housing opportunity and reinforced a car-and truck-centric streetscape on Atlantic Avenue. This is an important step forward to create a more vibrant Central Brooklyn.”
“Housing and public space go hand-in-hand. We’re so grateful that alongside the Atlantic Avenue Mixed-Use Plan’s goal of adding approximately 4,000 new homes in Central Brooklyn, Mayor Adams has made the critical investment needed to completely renovate St. Andrew’s Playground for the first time in 20 years,” said New York City Department of Parks & Recreation (NYC Parks) Commissioner Sue Donoghue. “With new play areas for kids, revamped sports facilities, additional seating and shade, storm resiliency infrastructure, and more, we are investing in a community space that the neighborhood can cherish for generations. I can’t wait to see the park’s transformation begin!”
“New York City isn’t just building new housing — we’re investing in communities. We’re proud to play an important role in the holistic plans coming to Atlantic Avenue through the mixed-use zoning framework, allowing us to maximize our potential for new affordable housing and community resources while creating the jobs and open space that makes Brooklyn a wonderful place to live,” said HPD Commissioner Adolfo Carrión, Jr. “Together with Mayor Adams, DCP, NYC Parks, and our partners across the city, we’re pairing affordable housing with the businesses, playgrounds, and open spaces that create thriving and walkable communities.”
“This plan represents an exciting opportunity to improve housing, public space, and mobility in Central Brooklyn, and DOT was proud to participate in the robust community engagement process,” said New York City Department of Transportation (DOT) Commissioner Ydanis Rodriguez. “We look forward to continuing to work with Councilmember Hudson, our sister agencies, and the community to build on the public spaces and street safety work DOT has done in the area — like the new plazas on Underhill and Gates avenues, permanent Open Street upgrades, and planned safety enhancements to Flatbush Avenue.”
The draft zoning framework and new investments follow more than eight months of public engagement on AAMUP conducted by DCP, Councilmember Crystal Hudson, and WXY Studio — the results of which were shared in the AAMUP Community Vision and Priorities report released in August 2023. That report built on engagement work started by local leaders and Brooklyn Community Board 8 under the “M-CROWN” process, which Mayor Adams supported as borough president.
The draft zoning framework was presented at a community discussion yesterday evening. A second community discussion and scoping meeting to kick off environmental review will take place this October. Over the coming months, DCP will continue to partner with local stakeholders and city agencies to hold community outreach meetings, identify additional investments, and prepare a draft environmental impact statement. The AAMUP proposal is expected to be certified and begin the Uniform Land Use Reform Procedure (ULURP) in spring 2024.
The draft zoning framework proposes a high-density mix of housing and commercial uses with active ground floor uses along Atlantic Avenue. In mid-blocks south of Atlantic Avenue between Grand Avenue and Franklin Avenue, and north of Atlantic Avenue along Herkimer Place, the draft framework proposes a special incentive to promote mixed-use development with one to two floors of non-residential uses. Along the north-south avenues of Grand, Classon, Franklin, and Bedford avenues, the framework proposes moderate density mixed-use districts with higher density along the avenues. At city-owned sites at 516 Bergen Street and 542 Dean Street, and at a nonprofit-owned site at 1134 Pacific Street, the framework proposes maximizing affordable housing opportunities. And at the Bedford-Atlantic Armory, the framework proposes bringing the armory into greater compliance with current zoning to allow flexibility for potential renovations, while allowing future community uses and exploring the possibility of affordable housing.
The Adams administration’s $23.5 million investment in St. Andrew’s Playground includes $13 million allocated through the New York City Strategy for Equity and Economic Development (NYC SEED) Fund, managed by DCP, and $10.9 million allocated through NYC Parks’ Community Parks Initiative to improve amenities including the playground, sports courts, restrooms, and turf field and running track. These improvements demonstrate the Adams administration’s commitment to the area and will be complemented by additional programmatic investments that will be developed throughout the neighborhood plan process.
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