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Exploring the Green Grass and Shiny Glass of 580 Carroll

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[Photos by Will Femia.]

Now that the locals have warmed up to 580 Carroll Street, Mexican starchitect Enrique Norten's 17-unit Park Slope controversy magnet, we thought it a good time to finally go see the glass and concrete condominium for ourselves (we didn't want to get egged by neighbors). Though only five stories, the building has taken a lot of heat for adding something "starkly modern and cool" (in developer Sean Ludwick's words) and "Miami" (in critics' words) to a 'hood more known for its brownstone blocks, though this stretch of Carroll Street between Fourth and Fifth Avenues is a mixed bag when it comes to architecture. The building's attention-grabbing centerpiece is its big communal front yard, intended as a High Line-inspired "living lobby" for residents and accessed through the building's front gate. (A gated community in Park Slope? Now we've seen everything!) The yard is a bit Zen right now, but furniture and other fun stuff is on the way.

According to Ludwick, five units are now in contract, and the Temporary Certificate of Occupancy should be arriving this month, meaning those buyers will soon be able to close. For high-end new construction with a name-brand architect attached, asking prices at 580 Carroll are pretty reasonable: From the mid-$600s for 900-square-foot 2BRs/2BAs, to around a million bucks for a pair of ground-floor duplexes with big private outdoor spaces, to $1.2 million for a top-floor pad with views all the way to Red Hook.

The units themselves feel pretty lofty with their 10' ceilings and ginormous windows, but it's that intended loft vibe that has caused some of the love-it-or-hate-it sentiment regarding the building?best illustrated through the epic kitchen debate. (Our take: Perfectly fine, but maybe cook Thanksgiving dinner for 12 elsewhere.) As for the "Garfield Sparta" nickname slapped on the building in the early stages, Ludwick told us the previous owner of the property established a Garfield LLC?the building also has an entrance on Garfield Place?and he needed to change the name. Inspiration struck when he exited the movie theater after seeing the bloody swords-and-sandals flick 300. Garfield Sparta LLC was born, though the name was never considered for the actual building. Boo!

Given the building's rocky road to completion, is Ludwick calling it quits on the development game? Nope. His Black House Development, formed with his business partner Ashwin Verma, is already working with Enrique Norten on the Hi Line Hotel in West Chelsea. Hey, that's in Manhattan! Park Slope can put away the pitchforks...for now.
· 580 Carroll [Official Site]
· 580 Carroll Street coverage [Curbed]

580 Carroll St

580 Carroll Street, Brooklyn, NY 11215

Garfield Sparta

580 Carroll Street, Brooklyn, NY