Representatives from the Clarett Group and other development partners, including architect Robert Rogers of Rogers Marvel faced a large crowd in Carroll Gardens last night to show the plans for their new building at 340 Court Street. (Photos of the renderings, which are everywhere this morning, are in the slideshow, and we've got pleas out for the real thing.) The main building would rise to 70 feet, have retail at street level and be clad in a gray stone. There would be town houses on the side streets. How did it go over in increasingly cranky Carroll Gardens, where residents have been inundated with major development proposals lately? Not that well.
Residents expressed concern about the building's height as well as its design and brought up other issues including construction safety. Clarett's Dan Hollander said the developer could have built a 170-foot building, but that they'd opted for "a contextual building." Residents interrupted a long question-and-answer session with boos (video version here). Many asked that building be changed from the current gray to brown, with one labeling it "a mausoleum."
One resident asked, "If you walked around the neighborhood, how did you get the gray color? Does the neighborhood look gray to you?" Mr. Hollander noted that there are "a lot of iterations and change in renderings" and Mr. Rogers said, "We are listening to you."
While the building would rise to 70 feet, and be set back from the street twice after 50 feet, Mr. Rogers estimated that mechanical elements would go to 85 feet. So, then, what about eliminating the elevators, one resident asked, noting that most buildings in the neighborhood are walk up and that a seven-floor walk up would be manageable. Many residents said that the buildings weren't Carroll Gardens enough. "People come here because of the brownstone," one said. "If they want an edgy place to live they don't come to Carroll Gardens."
· 340 Court Developer Presents Plans to Skeptical Carroll Gardens Crowd [GL]
· Meet Big Black: Clarett's New Carroll Gardens "Mausoleum" [Lost City]
· Carroll Gardens Not Exactly Loving Clarett's 340 Union Design [PMFA]