Yet another plan has been pitched for Sunset Park's decrepit Romanesque Revival castle, this time by the Department of Education. The DOE is in talks with the building’s owner, developer Yosef Streicher, to bring a much-needed public school to the landmarked structure that has sat empty since the 1970s.
Streicher picked up the former police precinct for $6 million in August 2015 with plans to fund a $5 million rehab that would remake the dilapidated structure into a community center and a cafe. He also had plans to construct a 10-condo building on an empty, adjacent lot.
Brooklyn Daily reports that the DOE is trying to coerce Streicher to, instead, bring a 300-seat public school to the building at 4302 Fourth Avenue, in the overcrowded SUnset Park school district. The DOE says they’re in the early stages of planning just how a school would work out at the site. Whatever changes would come to the structure would need to be approved by the Landmarks Preservation Commission, who designated the former precinct an individual city landmark in 1983.
A rep for Streicher said that it would "be a shame if they turned it into a school where everything is obviously gated and closed," speaking to the building’s resplendent details. "But listen, if that’s what the city wants to do—and they can force us to sell— then we don’t stand a chance against them."
The city sold 4302 Fourth Avenue to a nonprofit in 1985 under the condition that it be converted into a community facility. That plan never came to fruition.