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Crown Heights development bringing over 500 apartments to area gains crucial support

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Councilwoman Laurie Cumbo approved the upzoning needed to allow the two rental towers to rise

Via Brooklyn Paper

Developers Cornell Realty and Carmel Partners have gained crucial backing to upzone the sites at 40 Crown Street and 931 Carroll Street to make way for two 16-story rental towers.

According to the Brooklyn Paper, developer’s request to upzone the sites—located near the Brooklyn Botanic Garden— obtained the support of Crown Heights Councilwoman Laurie Cumbo, after she worked out a deal that she says will virtually double the amount of affordable housing included in the contested project. Cumbo announced the new deal at a December 13 Council Subcommittee on Zoning and Franchises hearing.

When the project was announced back in 2016, it planned for around 390 apartments, of which 105 would be affordable within the building at 40 Crown Street, while the second building, located at 931 Carroll Street, aimed to offer 128 apartments with 35 of those being affordable. However, the site’s zoning only allowed for buildings up to seven stories high, as of right.

Under the new deal, developers are required to dedicate space for an additional 118 affordable apartments, bringing to total amount up to 258. Per Brooklyn Paper, nearly all of the additional affordable units will be constructed by nonprofit organization Asian Americans for Equality. Carmel Partners agreed to give the nonprofit an 1,100-square-foot parcel of land in exchange for Cumbo’s approval of the upzoning request, as part of the city’s Universal Land Use Review Procedure.

“This is nothing short of a miracle to announce I have secured commitments to increase affordable housing,” Crown Heights Councilwoman Laurie Cumbo during the December 13 hearing.

The full City Council is scheduled to vote on the upzoning on December 20.