A host of elected officials are lining up to support Park Slope residents in their efforts to ensure that a supermarket and affordable apartments are part of the planned development set to replace the neighborhood Key Food, DNAinfo reports.
City Councilman Brad Lander, who has expressed concerns about the project from the start, was joined by the likes of Public Advocate Letitia James, City Comptroller Scott Stringer, and Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams.
Together they've addressed a letter to the Department of City Planning and the Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD), the agencies that will ultimately decide on the fate of the property, to ensure that the new development includes affordable units that are at a lower threshold of affordability than what the developer suggested, and that the new building also has a sizable supermarket.
Plans presented to the community in February called for the creation of two buildings at the site with 165 apartments spread out between them. Of these 41 would be affordable. The development would also come with ground floor retail.
The major concern however was the size of the retail. While the developer promised a grocery store, at the time of the community meeting, Avery Hall Investments could not guarantee more than 7,500 square feet. The current Key Food spans 36,000 square feet. Furthermore the lowest Average Median Income (AMI) band for affordable units was set at 60 percent of AMI, which many residents complained was far too high to afford.
The elected officials now want HPD and City Planning to intervene and take local residents' concerns into account. They've asked that at least 10 percent of the apartments be offered at 40 percent of AMI. They've also asked that Avery Hall give preference to those who have been displaced from the neighborhood.
A spokesperson for the HPD told DNAinfo that discussions were ongoing with the developer, and a spokesperson for Avery Hall confirmed the same with the publication, adding that they were working to find the best solution.
HPD and City Planning had previously supported the development with the 25 percent affordable units requirement that Avery Hall is offering.