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Park Slope Key Food developer doubles down on affordability promises

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The agreement holds developers accountable to promises of an affordable supermarket and apartments

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UPDATE (3/25/17): Developers Avery Hall Investments have signed a “cooperation agreement” with ten community organizations to ensure that the Key Food mixed-use redevelopment stick to the promises made to local residents. As part of the agreement, developers will deliver a 22,000-square-foot supermarket with a 20-year lease. Additionally, 41 out of the 165 apartments (25 percent) will be affordable and of those, 16 will be designated for very low-income residents earning no more than 40 percent of the area median income (AMI), which amounts to $36,000 for a family of four.

“Avery Hall Investments is delighted to be moving forward with a great mixed use rental project that is attractive, contextual, and responsive to community needs,” said Brian Ezra, Co-founder & Principal of Avery Hall Investments.

The community will work with developers to find a suitable grocery company to replace Key Food, who has offered a diverse range of products at an affordable price point for the past 35 years.

The trend of converting the city’s grocery stores into residential developments continues and the latest store to fall victim is a Key Food at 120 Fifth Avenue in Park Slope. According to The Real Deal, the site has finally been acquired by Avery Hall Investments, who plans to convert the space into two mixed-use towers that will offer a total of 165 apartments along with a new supermarket.

After months of negotiating with Park Slope residents, many of who objected the original proposal because it did not offer space for a new supermarket and they felt the average median income (AMI) for the affordable units were set too high, developers are finally moving forward with plans for a six-story and a four-story building where the current low-rise structure and its adjoining parking lot stand. Following the advice from community input, the new grocery store will remain “community-oriented” by carrying a diverse range of products at a variety of price points.

The apartments are slated to be rentals, of which 41 will be affordable units. Of those 41, there will be 16 apartments reserved for residents with “very low income,” though developers are depending on a 421-a tax break to make that possible.

Construction is expected to begin sometime this year.

Rendering of Park Slope’s 120 Fifth Avenue redevelopment.
Avery Hall Investments.