A year and a half after the Brooklyn Public Library (BPL) first said that it wanted to sell its Brooklyn Heights branch to raise much-needed funds for the systemnot without vocal opposition, of coursethe project has taken a major step forward. Capital New York first reported that BPL's executive committee green-lit a proposal from developer Hudson Companies (chosen from several other bids) to build a 20-story building with about 130 apartments on the site of the current library, at 280 Cadman Plaza West. That 1962-built structure would be demolished, and the tower that would rise would house a library on the ground floor. The project would be design by Marvel Architects, a firm known for what preservationists like to call contextual work.
In exchange, Hudson Companies is paying $52 million for the land, which'll go towards the $300 million worth of repairs that the BPL system needs. (Yeah, other research shows libraries are in bad shape right now.) It will also build 114 units of affordable housing in the district overseen by Community Board 2. Hudson will also rent a space nearby, in Our Lady of Lebanon Church, for the library to move while construction is underway. According to the Times, the proposed building will also include retail and community space as well as a gym for St. Ann's School.
The building above is not 100-percent guaranteed to become reality, though, because the proposal first has to go through the city's ULURP process and gain approval from the community and elected officials. To cite just one potential hurdle, Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams is not a fan, saying in April, "I am opposed to selling off any public space." Hudson and BPL expect to break ground in 2016, with completion slated for three-and-a-half-years after that.
· Brooklyn Heights Project [BPL]
· Brooklyn Public Library zeroes in on developer for Heights [Capital]
· BREAKING: Hudson Companies / Marvel Architects Announced as Brooklyn Heights Library Developer [BHB]
· Trustees Endorse Plan to Sell Land Beneath Branch of Brooklyn Library [NYT]
· Brooklyn Heights Library Development Plan Includes 114 Affordable Units [DNAinfo]
· Possible Library-Replacing Towers Revealed For BK Heights [Curbed]
· All Brooklyn Heights Library coverage [Curbed]